Dior’s Classic Fall – Bill Gaytten looked towards the archives for inspiration with his second mainline collection for Dior’s fall 2012 presentation. With still no official word on a permanent creative director, the new season showcased demure forties and fifties inspired silhouettes in a muted color palette of taupe, black and burgundy. Despite the lack of Galliano opulence, Gaytten offered a lovely refinement for the autumn season with ballerina inspired shapes. Cinched jackets, pleated skirts and jewelry style embellishments dominate the Dior woman’s wardrobe for autumn.
Balmain’s Bejeweled Fall – Marking his second season as creative director of Balmain, French designer Olivier Rousteing look towards Fabergé eggs gave to Elizabeth Taylor as inspiration for the label’s fall 2012 collection. Balmain’s signature military inspired jackets took an elegant turn in the form of pearl and gem adorned skin-tight dresses, outerwear and velvet pants. Strong shoulders brought an androgynous edge to the ultra-sexy silhouettes in neutral hues of black, nude and mint green. Despite the classic reference, Rousteing still kept Balmain’s modern edge for the upcoming autumn with razor sharp precision.
Balenciaga’s Power Dressing – Balenciaga designer Nicolas Ghesquière sent out his own vision of 80′s power dressing with the label’s fall 2012 collection presented during Paris Fashion Week. Coats with puffed-up shoulders opened the show, featuring bright dresses in electric blue and scarlet layered underneath. Metallic detailing and graphic prints brought a futuristic appeal to the strong silhouettes. Besides outerwear, the autumn season also offered mid-length skirts and slouchy trousers.
Cavalli’s Sumptuous Fall – Roberto Cavalli presented a sumptuous fall 2012 collection made of pure glamour for the final day of Milan Fashion Week. Cavalli’s vision of autumn included short dresses in jewel toned colors of emerald-green, plum, fuchsia, electric blue and burgundy. Animal prints, fur and leather gloves dominated the runway as models sported long bohemian locks matched with smokey eyes. As the show continued, Cavalli introduced maxi dresses layered underneath long overcoats. Saving the best for last, supermodel Naomi Campbell closed the show in a stunning beaded gown with a plunging neckline.
Ferragamo’s Strict Elegance – For fall 2012, Salvatore Ferragamo tempered tropical prints in exchange for black leather and lace with its latest collection previewed during Milan Fashion Week. Coats had a military inspired cut with sweeping shapes and gold accents, while skirts came in flirty shapes paired with belts in black or chocolate. As the show progressed, black transformed into plum, taupe and dark scarlet hues. Designer Massimiliano Giornetti ended on a romantic note–featuring sheer dresses with brocade detailing and billowing shapes.
Dolce & Gabbana’s Baroque Woman – Dolce & Gabbana’s Italian glamour took a turn for bejeweled, Baroque inspired beauty with designers Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana’s fall 2012 showing presented during Milan Fashion Week. Influenced by Sicilian art work, models took to the runway in brocade and cherub tapestry prints. Accessories for the show included bejeweled headbands, gold jewelry and pearl adorned handbags. Delicate lace work was also on display with ladylike dresses that reached the knee and black veils worn like the Madonna. Bringing some sex appeal to the demure showing, Dolce sent out lingerie inspired bustiers and hot pants for a cheeky take on the Baroque influence.
Pucci’s Pared Down Fall – Emilio Pucci’s bohemian chic took a turn for glamorous minimalism with its fall 2012 presentation shown during Milan Fashion Week. Creative director Peter Dundas opened with a strong showing of black dresses in slinky silhouettes. Luxe crocodile, crystal detailing and sheer cutouts brought some sex appeal to the minimal designs. As the show progressed, some color was introduced in the form of sky blue and nude tones. Menswear inspired looks such as modified tuxedo jackets and tailored pants also made an appearance. With the lack of prints and fringe, it appears that the Pucci woman might be growing up, but as Dundas’ designs suggest–it doesn’t mean a loss of sex appeal for the upcoming autumn.
Raf’s Farewell to Jil Sander – With news of Raf Simons’ departure from Jil Sander hitting this week (and a possible move to Dior), fall 2012 marks the last season that the Belgian designer will be known as creative director of the German label. It only seems fitting that his final season featured an expert showing of minimal, ladylike clothing which the house has become well-known for while under his direction. A color palette of powder pink, nude, ivory, scarlet and black set a classically refined tone for the new season. Simons also introduced his own take on well-known shapes with a play on proportion and color.
As one chapter closes, another one opens. Designer Jil Sander is set to take over her namesake label once again with Simons’ departure, and it will certainly be interesting to see what her vision is for the label’s future.
Bottega Veneta’s Somber Elegance – For fall 2012, Bottega Veneta creative director Tomas Maier presented a collection of dark elegance during the fourth day of Milan Fashion Week. Opening with an army of somber black ensembles, the Bottega woman looks towards minimal yet form-fitting silhouettes for the new season. As the show continued, however, Maier introduced some color in the form of soft lavender, dark plum and abstract prints in shades of citrus orange. Many looks were matched with black gloves that ran far past the elbow. The display of understated elegance culminated in a finale gown of lush velvet, worn by spring campaign star Karmen Pedaru.
Versace’s Tough Glamour – Donatella Versace opted for a dark color palette with rock and roll undertones for Versace’s fall 2012 show presented during Milan Fashion Week. Sexy silhouettes, metal mesh and jewel encrusted Byzantine crosses dominated the runway as models donned short hemlines and fitted jackets for autumn. Embracing a dark edge, Versace matched form-fitting designs with leather gloves and severe hair. Adding to the glamazon looks were heeled boots made of more mesh that ended at the knee. The Versace logo was even incorporated on a few pieces in the form of bold, graphic lettering. For the finale, a gown of pure silver chains and metallic fabric hit the catwalk for an armored yet luxe end statement.