2011 September 26
Spring 2012: Roberto Cavalli, Gianfranco Ferré, Giorgio Armani
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(MILAN) Roberto Cavalli
Chez Bobby, more is always more. This season, the king of drame staged a goth-like runway—befitting his moody Spring collection--with glittering chandeliers and red caging suspended from the ceiling. Courtney Love took in the haute affair front row while mods stalked the runway in quintessential Cavalli: glittery ring master tux jackets, skin tight trousers in leopard print or python, and a blitz of sheer bejeweled gowns, replete with lace panels, pastel print-on-print mashups, and pleated skirts. Like his peers, the Italian designer doled out a dose of 20s glam but managed to weave in his own bohemian rock ‘n’ roll sensibility. Witness the rococo-esque gold flapper dress with a gilded neckline and shimmering pleat skirt or the various swinging no-waist shifts outfitted in black sequins and bold animal patterns. On every editrices wish list: the mirrored croc platforms in biscotti or noir.
Later Jazz Age! Newly appointed creative directors Stefano Citron and Frederico Piaggi, who came on board Gianfranco Ferré in July, skipped the jazz era craze taking over catwalks in a collection that spoke to the architectural background of its trend-shy founder. No tropical prints. No sparkly Great Gatsby separates. No tricky trappings and over-the-top accents. Instead, the duo revisited Ferre’s sculptural aesthetic in a white, nude and black color way with a surprise pop of purple, metallic, and fuchsia. Opening the packed show was a sharply tailored white column gown boasting a thigh-high slit and sleek assym collar. Minutes later, Ferre’s signature white button-down was reimagined in an oversized silhouette with a karate belt, off-kilter hem, and double sleeve atop silky capris. Kudos were divvied among the beige silk pantsuit with a plunging V, roomy high-waisted evening bottoms with one-shouldered toppers, and the minimalistic spin on the 90s working woman power suit. No doubt Ferré's owners, Dubai-based Paris Group, are applauding the creative captains for their retail-friendly offering.
Iridescent underwater marvels, most notably mother of pearl, were on Giorgio Armani’s mind for Spring. Coco Rocha got the water-themed show underway in a silver floral blazer and cami teamed with high-waisted silk trousers, slit at the ankle—one of Mr. Armani’s staple pants for the season. Following in Rocha’s footsteps were riffs of the same except this time shimmering blazers became more fitted and transformed into like-printed peplum blouses or lengthened into Eastern-influenced jackets, sans collar and tied with an obi-like belt; silk camis shifted into one-shouldered numbers or sheer chiffon blouses printed with budding abstractions. Later on, office-to-opera dressing championed the runway with dress-over-pant pairings, slinky strapless concoctions, and striped two-tone separates, mimicking a school of shiny damsel fish. Punctuating the sea of glitz? A trio of look-a-like models, bidding ciao to Milan in bedazzled strapless evening gowns.