Thursday, October 14, 2010
What Is Barena?
I had the very same question when I stumbled across the Italian label while reading Things Is Cool. First off, Barena, as a term, is a "little known Italian name that describes a zone that is between a lake and a lagoon." The Venetian brand draws their name directly from their own heritage. See, originally Venice was made up of lagoons, barena and a few small islands. It was this geographical feature that enabled its habitants to easily transition between agriculture, hunting and fishing. The collection is inspired by the Venetian Delta and its inhabitants, drawing inspiration from all aspects of life and the customary dress (i.e. costume) of the area. One look at the clothes makes this correlation very obvious. Barena also places a huge focus on their fabrics. While I don't know if the fabric is locally sourced, Barena primarily uses the finest exclusively Italian wools and linens depending on the season. Since their founding in 1961 by Sandro Zara, Barena has been fueled by tradition, not unlike certain stateside brands we have come to love here in the blogosphere. As it stands today the label is run by the three headed brain trust of Massimo Pigozzo, Giovanni Zara and Francesca Zara. Personally, I love this stuff. Strong character abounds and while the term "costume" gets thrown around a lot, I think it works here. It's a "look", I'm not denying that, but one that actually registers thanks to the very same tradition and authenticity that Barena was founded upon. Check out some looks from both S/S 2010 and F/W 2011 below. Can we get this older gentleman in everyone's lookbook? Is that possible?