Joseph Altuzarra loves a muse. But where his past inspirations have been fictitious women of the big screen, his fall collection went back to the stylized portraiture of the Renaissance era. As he explained it, this was a time when painters stopped sugar-coating their subjects and started showing a little more realism—imperfections, quirks, tics, the stuff that makes a person interesting. (Interesting to note that air-brushing is not a new concept.) To wit, the girls and clothes Altuzarra presented still had that air of cool sexiness, but it wasn’t overt and obvious as it has been in the past.
The richness of his materials — the florals, velvets, doe-like furs, satin quilts — felt as if they had been pulled straight from the tapestry backdrops of his inspiration images. And no matter how feminine the print or color, there was an underlying edge of severity thanks to the torn hosiery and stomper boots or corset-like stiletto booties.
In places, Altuzarra relaxed the pencil silhouette he loves in favor of a ’40s fit-and-subtle flare. But the side-slit pencil cropped up in finely tailored red tweed suits and corsetted separates.
The big story here were the coats and outerwear, which ran the gamut from military-inspired with epaulets and braiding to super rich doe-looking furs, all in different silhouettes. In many places, between the structure of the coat shoulder, pearl headbands and models’ poker faces, it felt like the runway was a parade of King Henry VIII’s wives.
He ended evening with decorative velvet — a major trend for fall. Navy, black, gold and red, the dresses came out with satin ribbons and crystal and gold thread flowers. It all felt fit for a queen.
By Nandini D’Souza Wolfe
From: Harper’s BAZAAR US
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