LE SIRENUSE Positano
A clothing line by one of Positano's most iconic hotels.
Shot by Sally Griffiths
Fashion is powerful. It not only has the ability to change you, but to create a persona of who you want to be. Perhaps the most important aspect is how fashion (or more specifically, an item of clothing), can become more than cloth and thread. It is a powerful memory conductor, reminding you of a vacation somewhere warm and dreamy, or a significant moment in time.
The garments that most often become these memory keepers are the ones we least expect, purchased on a happy occasion. Such is the case with Le Sirenuse Positano, a line of caftans and separates most often constructed from cotton created by Carla Sersale. The line was born from a place that is also the cause of many idyllic memories; the charming and iconic hotel, Le Sirenuse, which seems more like a movie set then an actual location. Perched high above the Mediterranean, the hotel has been a favorite for many since 1992. In 2013, Carla decided it was time to launch a line of her own. Her offerings were simple: pieces you’d hope to find wandering through a village market to wear later to the beach. It’s no surprise that she takes most of her inspiration from her surroundings."I'm always inspired by the understated elegance of Le Sirenuse and the cool atmosphere that lives in its welcoming rooms," she says. "There’s a modernity to our style that is inspired by the past but looks to the future. Also, the colors of the Amalfi Coast—lots of blues, mixed with a rainbow palette."
Patterns in her collections change each season, influenced by a different ancient society and their specific patterns and colors. "I start every new collection by finding a source of inspiration. I need to have a theme. The first collection was inspired by the ancient Suzani patterns from Central Asia's traditional embroideries, my family has been collecting them for years. The 2018 collection is inspired by the civilization of Mesopotamia. It's an exotic dream of idyllic, ancient gardens populated by leopards and palm trees, rivers and oceans, all under a sky of planets and stars.
The silhouettes however, remain the same. Traditional caftans, cropped tops and breezy shorts that have been worn by chic women for decades. "I made the first collection in 2013 for my boutique at Le Sirenuse and needed easy, loose caftans and dresses for the lifestyle in Positano," says Carla. "My icons are Grace Kelly, Audrey Hepburn, Lady Diana, Jacqueline Kennedy, Brigitte Bardot – maybe all of them together."
The perpetual sunshine in Positano means that Carla's pieces are never relegated to the back of the closet or bottom of a suitcase. Instead, each breezy cotton creation is lived in, warmed by the sun and fragranced by the salty sea. Memory collectors, just waiting to be worn.