Summary: According to his notes, Carlos Miele’s AW12 collection was “inspired by the culture of Southern Brazil and in particular the women from Rio Grande do Sul. Carlos Miele reinterprets the free lifestyle and natural elegance of these country women for a cosmopolitan audience.” The regional inspiration for this collection was apparent as soon as the first model hit the runway. She was draped in a camel-colored belted caftan, emblazoned with a South American-inspired print, and a gorgeous wide-brimmed hat that Miele identified as “those of the authentic gaúchas.”
With this collection, Miele took a vivid source of inspiration and realized it with impeccable sophistication and visual allure. Western influences were modernized in a sheer button up blouse tucked into high-waisted harem pants, tied with a printed sash and finished with a hat. Details like the fringe on the open-toe booties worn throughout the collection, and the straps reaching from the hats and secured at the neck with a bead, employed the authenticity that secured Miele’s inspiration, delivered successfully with his own personal flair.
These more literal looks were balanced by Miele’s signature forays into elegant evening wear. A floor-length peach gown was draped and tucked with folds of tulle, expanding up to the neck in a voluminous high collar that was structured to look like a bow. A flowing ruffle-bottomed cream gown was finished with a metallic studded bolero, and oversized fur ponchos were worn over the body or across the shoulder as a stole.
Infused with the rich elegance that fans of the designer have come to love and expect, Miele’s signature moves were balanced with the specificity of his inspiration — this allowed him to break away from his aesthetic by enhancing the details and visually exploring another culture. For Miele, this collection is an undeniable triumph.
Colors: Taupe, tan, sand, black, ecru, chartreuse, blue, azure, brown, cinnamon, oatmeal, light hold, tangerine, red, orange, fuchsia, gold
Fabrics and Textures: Wool, woven silk, leather, metal coin appliques, crepe, satin, fringe, grommets, lace, geometric prints, silk charmeuse, pleating, silk chiffon, woven, knit, lame, fuxico, silk gazar, silk taffeta, draping, asymmetry, sequins, tulle.
Key Looks: Taupe wool poncho with wove silk tiras detail, tan leather belt with metal coin applique, sand crepe pants with satin applique, black open-toe booties with leather tiras and metal-edged fringe; Sand tulle fuxico dress with sleeves and light gold lame underlay, nude open-toe booties with leather tiras and metal-edged fringe; Fuchsia geometric print gown with silk charmeuse with pleated detail, fuchsia geometric print silk chiffon long sleeve top and black open-toe booties with leather tiras and metal-edged fringe.
— Amanda Aldinger