Margherita Missoni’s Life in Flowers

Published April 24, 2020

At Margherita Maccapani Missoni’s home, flowers dictate the tone: fixed to the walls via feminine prints on paper or, more recently, as arrangements using flowers picked from her own garden. Currently on lockdown with her family in Varese, Italy, about an hour from Milan, Missoni—the Creative Director of M Missoni, part of her family’s fashion empire—has found respite from the news cycle in her immediate space. “I’m taking advantage of my house, and everything that it houses on a much deeper level,” she says.

Beyond her enthusiasm for floristry, she’s also been curating. Prior to lockdown, Missoni was invited to collaborate with the auction house Sotheby’s on its recent—and to date, most successful—Contemporary Curated sale. (Kim Jones and Roksanda Ilincic have both previously taken on the role.) “I have a deep love for art, its ability to empower and connect one another, so I was pretty excited to work on this project,” she says. While Margherita’s favorites include pieces by Yayoi Kusama, Thomas Saraceno, and Tim Noble and Sue Webster—“I met them during a vacation many moons ago”—in her own home, she’s surrounded by pieces that marry her chief interests: faux flowers. Here, Margherita shares the stories behind five of her favorites. 

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“I’ve been a fan of Vladimir Kanevsky’s work for a long time now. I can’t tell you how pleased I was when my husband surprised me with this for my birthday. I’m obsessed by how real the flowers look, and how delicate they are. I’m always fascinated by art that makes me wonder where art ends and real life begins. They sit very high up on a shelf, away from my children’s reach! Guests at first always think they’re real, and are surprised to hear that they aren’t.”

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“I bought these lamps in Brussels during an antique shopping spree with my husband. We love taking mini trips to furnish our home. Unfortunately, this trip coincided with the terrorist attacks in the city, so for me, there’s something a little melancholy about them. I love shells, I love flowers, and I love the ’70s—could I ask for anything better? They sit in the dining room next to some Zanellazine ceramics. My guests are always curious about their material.”

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“I’m an avid collector of Zanellazine’s ceramics, and these are the first flowers I purchased from them. I love the fact that the different elements are stacked up on top of each other. I love totems, and I love Raku ceramics. I purchased them during a spring market in Varese, Italy. They sit amongst the family photos in the living room. Many of our family and friends have also become Zanellazine collectors after seeing these.”

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“I was given this ornament as a thank you present from friends who stayed in our New York apartment; they’re from a Sunday market. I’ve owned beaded flowers from Venice forever, and this piece is just so perfect for me—and they are daisies! I also love the aqua color of their bowl. They sit on a Plexi shelf designed by Andrea Branzi in the living room.”

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“I started collecting fake flowers in my late teens, although because of my name, I’ve been receiving objects in the shape of daisies since birth. Flowers are my absolute favorite subject. I purchased this at Fuorisalone seven years ago, while cruising the Ventura district. I love the nonsense size of it. It sits in the living room next to our family photos. It’s definitely a conversation starter with new guests to our home!”