When British designer Paul Surridge joined Roberto Cavalli last year as creative director, he came with a vision to make the storied Italian fashion house more relevant and contemporary, and to engage with a wider audience. Once synonymous with leopard print and gold, Cavalli has been transformed by Surridge, who describes himself a “relentless modernist” in an interview with Vogue, and draws upon his background in menswear to capture “the play between intellect and function”.
With great respect to Cavalli (whom Surridge calls “a real innovator”), Cavalli 2.0 dips into the craftsmanship of its archives—printed and embroidered leather, denim, patchwork, knitwear, and beading—to reimagine the house codes for the modern woman and man. Taking cues from an athletic and powerful sensuality, Surridge is concerned with “really understanding the needs of a modern woman. And making it cooler, and making it function for many women rather than just one.” For men, it’s about “a guy—slightly cocky, slightly self-assured—who’s a part of a new generation of luxury consumers,” as he told Esquire. “The Italian style is very tailored and elegant, but I also want to make it a fun brand.”