No review of the Haute Couture would be complete without a look at the Italian labels who show during HC week in Paris. That said, Fendi is an Italian brand designed by a German and Valentino was founded by an Italian who put the creative offices in Paris. Let’s take a peek at their looks for evening; you may even find inspiration for your fall cocktail party wardrobe…
Karl Legerfeld’s 5th collection for Fendi HC is a fairy tale come true. The whimsical designs are pure sophisticated magic. One favorite of mine – I have many – in the collection is a layered chiffon evening gown with a background of spooky trees under a layer of chiffon embellished with cheerful flowers and vaguely hypnotic poppies and plants. The floral capelet neckline adds drama to this already visually stunning creation. It’s simply magical!
The two Italians at the helm of Valentino HC ensure that the brand continues to deliver Parisian chic with a decidedly Italian flavor. Drawing inspiration for this season from Elizabethan England, the collection features dramatic collars, capelets, and leg of mutton sleeves. My favorite look is a royal purple Duchesse satin evening gown that plays with body proportions and definitely challenges our ideas of what a gown should look like.
For the perfect blending of La Dolce Vita and La Vie en Rose with an extra dash of sex appeal, we turn to Donatella Versace’s Atelier Versace HC collection. Known for her second skin, barely-there designs, this season Versace delivers a study in draping. Fear not, the thigh-high slits and peekaboo bodices are still there, but the update to classic Versace is refreshing. Let’s hope the Hollywood starlets, and their stylists, take note. You don’t have to be “Too x 3” – too low, too short, and too tight – to be over the top!
Speaking of starlets, let’s peek at Armani Prive to see what next year’s Red Carpet will feature. The collection features something for everyone, from Jessica Rabbit to Audrey Hepburn, as long as they like sparkle. My favorites are the long sleeved evening gowns – you know how hard I try to make this happen season after season. If only the Hollywood stylists could wrap their heads around it. If you’re looking for inspiration for the upcoming gala fundraiser season, focus on the slim evening skirt, but my money is on the peplum over the slim evening skirt!
For the starlet who wants to look young – and isn’t trying too hard to look like a “serious actress” – on the red carpet, we turn to Giambatista Valli. Normally, I choose to highlight a red gown in Rosso Valentino, but this season, the best in this shade is a chiffon number from Valli that is just perfect for the young actress. Let’s hope we see some serious fashion this next Red Carpet season.
I hope that you enjoyed our little tour of Italian style in the Paris HC. I’ll return next month with some must-have items for your fall wardrobe from the American RTW. In the meantime, stay chic!
– Joseph Ungoco
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