(b. 1922) Duchesa Simonetta Colonna di Cesaro began her clothes designing career in Rome in the 1930s, making fancy costume ball dresses. During World War II, she was arrested by the Fascists, and was interned in a remote village.
In 1946, under her married name, Simonetta Visconti, she opened a design studio and she quickly became one of the most famous designers in Rome. She was “discovered” by the American fashion press in 1948, and she became a favorite of traveling Americans. In 1952 she married Alberto Fabiani, who was also an Italian designer. During this time Italian fashions were enjoying a moment in the sun in the fashion press, and both Simonetta and Fabiani prospered.
In 1962 the pair went to Paris and formed a joint design firm, Simonetta et Fabiani. The venture was a failure and the marriage floundered. In 1965 Fabiani returned to Rome where he resumed his couture house. Simonetta remained in Paris where she opened a boutique which sold expensive ready-to-wear. In the early 1970s she sold her boutique and the usage of her name. She went to India where she studies Eastern philosophy and worked to develop industries in a leper colony.
Written by fuzzylizzie