Unlike her lovable loose cannon of a sister, Franca Sozzani (Italian Vogue editor-in-chief and endlessly quotable un-PC font), Carla Sozzani keeps a relatively low profile. As a former gallerist in Milan, she quietly opened Galleria Carla Sozzani in 1990, which exploded just a year later into the fashion/design concept store — thought to be the first — known by everyone today as 10 Corso Como. It is now a bustling space dedicated to the explorations of culture, literature, culinary art, and music. There is even now a boutique hotel, where many of fashion’s cognoscenti stay when in town for Milan Fashion Week, as they are this week.
In May, Rizzoli will publish a monograph of the store, authored by Carla Sozzani herself, called A to Z. And it is exactly that, an A to Z dictionary of her universe, beginning with Azzedine (“Since 1980 I have sat at his long table in the atelier. We eat and talk late into the evenings, speaking of new plans and recalling wonderful times we have shared”) and ending with The Little Zen Companion (“With both Eastern and Western poems, parables, haiku, and sayings, it is a serious and evocative way to view life. And each page is delightfully short”). Naturally, as she’s hardly the type to be contained in a mere 26 letters, she indulges in multiple meanings for each. Perhaps the sweetest is S, which stands for Sisters (“Like DNA, we will always be joined. Winding around each other—alike and not alike”).