What do the wardrobes of Rihanna, Princess Diana, Michelle Obama, Madonna, Katy Perry, and Miley Cyrus all have in common? Moschino. All these powerful women — including pearl-clad Princess Diana and leotard-wearing Miley Cyrus — have been spotted wearing Italian designer Franco Moschino’s creations.

“VIVA MOSCHINO!” opens Oct. 31 at the Mint Uptown, featuring around 40 ensembles from the late Italian designer Moschino’s Cheap & Chic line. Moschino’s designs have popped up in fashion exhibits before, but the Mint’s exhibit will be the first in America focused solely on Moschino. It goes through April 3.

(Hint: pronounce the “ch” like a “k.” I got it wrong the first time, too.)


The late Franco Moschino, who died in 1994 at age 44, was known in the fashion world for taking whimsy to the extreme in his wild but clever designs. Highlights of his work include a satire of the iconic Chanel suit with the words “Waist of Money” embroidered where the usual gold chain belt would go. Punny.

Today, Jeremy Scott ensures Moschino designs are still catching eyes as creative director of the brand. His first Moschino collection, Fall/Winter 2014, kept the mockery of consumer mania alive with McDonald’s- and Spongebob-themed ensembles.



Humor is what sets the Moschino brand apart. “It’s easy to be dismissive of humor,” Scott was quoted as saying in the September issue of “InStyle.” “…For me, there is so much strife in this world already. If what I do can lift your spirits, then I have achieved my goal.”

Dressing the stars

– Princess Diana wore a red and black houndstooth suit designed by Moschino to Princess Eugenie’s christening in 1990.

– Michelle Obama sported a beige Moschino dress to an event in 2012 to discuss a military spouse employment program.

– Miley Cyrus is a repeat Moschino-wearer and is friends with Scott. The two collaborated last year for a New York fashion show featuring Moschino’s Spring/Summer 2015 collection.

– Both Madonna and Katy Perry flaunted Moschino gowns for the 2015 Met Gala in May. Back in June, Katy Perry announced she was “the new face of Moschino.”


The Mint perspective

“We’re trying to put a stake in the ground around fashion,” said Kathleen Jameson, CEO of the Mint.

She thinks Charlotte is a stylish city. Let’s prove her right.


(1) Image of Rihanna in Moschino Couture early 2014. Franco Moschino (Italian, 1950-1994). Moschino LLC. (Italy, founded 1983). Faux Leopard Coat, 1993-1994, velvet and mixed media. Photography by Devon Byrd, Pacific Coat News.

(2) Franco Moschino (Italian, 1950-1994). Moschino LLC. (Italy, founded 1983). WHAAM! Dress (detail of back), 1993, silk. Museum Purchase: Funds provided by Deidre and Clay Grubb. T0077.2. Collection of The Mint Museum, Charlotte, North Carolina.

(3) Franco Moschino (Italian, 1950-1994). Moschino LLC. (Italy, founded 1983). “Peace and Pearls” Sleeveless Top, Fall/Winter 1989-1990, rayon and mixed media. Cartoon Couture Black Skirt, rayon and acetate. Museum Purchase: Funds provided by Deidre and Clay Grubb. T0077.3B; T0077.6. Collection of The Mint Museum, Charlotte, North Carolina.