Fifty years have passed since the very first issue of Diabolik landed on the shelves, followed, just a year later, by the legendary Eva Kant.
So we simply couldn’t overlook the Milan of the Giussani sisters, Angela and Luciana who, by challenging the respectability of that era, the cocktail outfits and elegant ski outfits specifically designed to be shown off at Saint Moritz, managed to create that dark, bad but always avant-garde character that also made a social statement.
Angela, who had previously worked as a model and whose husband owned the Astoria publishing company, established and developed Astorina, which then broke away from the holding company when she divorced her husband Gino Sansoni, and subsequently cemented her already idyllic relationship with her sister Luciana.
Angela continued to work on tirelessly all the way through to 1967, whereas Luciana was to leave her final story in the drawer in 2001.
So let’s combine the classic and the profane, as well as rigour and pulp-generation, starting at No. 4, Piazzale de Agostini (for a long time the girls lived just across the street) with the conservative, essential outfits at Chicchi Ginepri, before heading down to No. 37, Via Marghera, home of one of the many branches of GameStop around the world, to stock up on some of the very latest computer games and then moving on to the Nove25, just around the corner in Via Ravizza, favourite haunt of rabid rappers and female protesters.
End off your tour in style and with a bit of ethereal silk by heading down to Via Guido d’Arezzo, overlooking the Pagano park, to drop in at Vera Persiani for a decidedly 1960’s style petticoat, perhaps?.
I grew to love this branch of Chicchi Ginepri (even though it must be said that the building that houses the Via Manin branch is truly impressive and the Viale Murillo branch has two wonderful display windows) because I used to go there with a dear friend of days gone by, when we used to have fun there, growing up way before our time.
Their outfits always seem to be comforting, Jil Sander-style and well-laid out in a generous and well-lit venue.
Once again in Via Ravizza, once again at No. 3, but this time around a jewellery store that deals exclusively in silver and exclusively for the younger crowd: sometimes on Saturday afternoons the pavement outside this store is jam-packed with teenagers with champagne tastes and a “water” budget.
A place that’s worth remembering, visiting and recommending, even though I somehow just can’t seem to get my simple little head around their extensive selection of small silver skulls!
Recently opened in the vicinity of the little Pagano park that has become a true green oasis in the Vercelli area, Mrs. Persiani’s shop in fact relocated there from Piazzale Lodi to make our days much more romantic!
Silk and light-cotton petticoats, olden-day pyjamas and nightgowns now in decidedly up-to-date colours, babies’ rompers reminiscent of Natalia Ginzberg’s “Family Sayings” and good, reasonably-priced towels all combine to make this place extremely attractive and worth keeping in mind for a highly-recommended shopping-spree!