In a quiet cathedral town in Northern Italy, a young Achille Maramotti caught the first glimpse of a lifelong vision. The starry-eyed entrepreneur’s calling intertwined with the lives of middle-class women in post-war Reggio Emilia—transforming their closets from a collection of time-consuming and laboriously tailor-made pieces to exquisitely designed ready-to-wear. With just a camel coat and a geranium red suit, Maramotti launched Max Mara in 1951 as an Italian fashion house that catered to the style-conscious masses.
Seven decades on, Max Mara is celebrating its platinum anniversary. At its helm is Maramotti’s granddaughter and omnichannel retail director Maria Giulia Prezioso Maramotti Germanetti. During her tenure, Prezioso Maramotti Germanetti has familiarised the brand to a bevy of young It girls, artfully blending the sensibilities of classic and cool. The house’s heritage hasn’t been lost on the likes of Bella Hadid, however, it’s simply evolved. And its 70th anniversary fare is proof.
As she looks back on Max Mara’s intricate heritage, Prezioso Maramotti Germanetti speaks to Vogue Singapore about the brand’s European roots, its biggest milestones and what she’s learnt from her multigenerational family business.
Congratulations on Max Mara’s 70th anniversary. How does it feel to look back on over three generations’ worth of milestones?
There is an incredible sense of pride and excitement to look back at a 70-year-old family legacy. For me, it is crucial to look at how Max Mara has evolved through the decades and to see how these experiences can lead us to new, exciting projects.
What would you say have been some of your proudest achievements so far?
Throughout the years, the biggest successes have been those that have made Max Mara visible to a younger platform, such as the recent fashion show in Ischia. These are only examples of moments when we’ve been received by the consumer in a fresher, younger way. Historically, we were very product-centred and that is good, but it is not enough anymore.
Max Mara brings with it a profound sense of European heritage. What have been some of the challenges in translating it to a younger clientele?
Younger generations are all about novelty and social media platforms have shortened attention spans. We come from a completely different philosophy. The challenge is to find the right way to transfer the concept of fabrics, timelessness and craftsmanship to a younger customer who is attracted to and excited by a brand exactly because of its timelessness. This can be challenging but fascinating, and I believe it is the key to our evolution.
My grandfather used to say he wanted to dress the doctor’s wife. Today, we dress doctors, managers, mothers, actresses and artists.
Who would you say is the Max Mara woman today and how might she be different—or similar—to the Max Mara woman of the ’50s?
A fashion brand’s success lies within its ability to intercept women’s needs. My grandfather used to say he wanted to dress the doctor’s wife. Today, we dress doctors, managers, mothers, actresses and artists. They have different lifestyles, but one thing in common: the sense of freedom that comes from wearing something that makes you feel good in it.
What would you say has been one of the biggest lessons from your grandfather that you’ve carried through until today?
The passion for his work, his curiosity, the fact that he was open to ideas and ready to embrace them. He was also passionate about life and balance. Life is too short not to enjoy it and appreciate it. After all, we are in a wonderful business.
Below, a closer look at Max Mara’s key 70th anniversary capsules, from a 7 for 70! T-shirt collection—featuring artworks from seven artists, each commemorating a specific decade of the brand—to a reimagining of Max Mara’s signature camel coats.
Visit Max Mara at #01-10 333A Mandarin Gallery, Singapore 238897.
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Reversible teddy bear icon coat in tobacco, $6,689
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Reversible icon coat, $7,259
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Nappa leather and fabric bag in chocolate, $2,499
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Nappa leather and fabric bag in tobacco, $2,299
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Reversible Ludmilla icon coat in beige, $9,589
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