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Preen and the scarlet letter

January 8 2018

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Thea Bregazzi and Justin Thornton, the founders of the English brand, designed their spring-summer 2018 collection as a manifesto. They wish to give back their power to women through the grace of a vowel: A. - Isabelle Cerboneschi.

B

launched. The first look of Preen's 2018 Spring-Summer Parade is entirely white: from the cap to the linen shirt, to the seventeenth-century lace cuffs to the pants. With the exception of one thing: a letter A, scarlet, embroidered on the shirt at the chest.

This letter could only be an embroidery, an ornament, half the initials of a person, if it were not a sign of infamy: "A" for adultery.

The collection of Thea Bregazzi and Justin Thornton, the founders of the brand, is inspired by the novel The Scarlet Letter Nathaniel Hawthorne. A work published in 1850 that criticizes the Puritan society in which the author grew up. It is about destiny Hester Prynne, a young woman living in a Puritan Massachusetts community, between 1642 and 1649. Because she is accused of committing adultery with a man from the village, whom she had a child in the absence of her husband, Hester Prynne is sentenced to bear the letter A - for adultery - in red, on the chest. A novel that raises fundamental questions about the nature of sin, about redemption, and about the value of judgment. The witch hunt is not far.

She is not far from us either. A world in which some dark beings have the power to sentence a girl to death because she has been raped, is she still endowed with a semblance of humanity? It's in this world that the two daughters of Thea Bregazzi and Justin Thornton will grow up, and Preen's 2018 spring-summer collection is a painful reminder. With their clothes, the founders of Preen hear their daughters, and all women, to let no one take their natural power.

Men have always loved identifying their supposed enemies with outward signs of recognition. As if, by affixing on the "others" a letter, a symbol, a star, one could succeed in circumscribing them and keeping them at a distance. To impose the separation between oneself and the rest by the stigma.

The last collection of Preen would like to shake our consciences, but smoothly. In the softness of a few ruffles, in the false candor of asymmetrical dresses that veil and unveil the skin, in the immaculate whiteness of wise cotton dresses, in the asymmetry of ties blouses, links that must be overcome, in the subtlety of light lace over-dresses like free thoughts, in the delicacy of flesh-colored underwear-dress, like a revealed skin.

Since they created their brand in 1996, Justin Thornton and Thea Bregazzi have imposed a style that excludes nothing: neither the feminine, the masculine, the lightness, the rigor, the historical references, nor the anchoring in everyday life. They dress Rihanna, Gwyneth Paltrow, Beyonce, the Duchess of Cambridge or Michèle Obama, powerful personalities. Their spring-summer 2018 collection is a sweet way to empower women.

A version of this article appeared on the website of Cent magazine, a digital and TV magazine published four times a year: www.centmagazine.co.uk