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Fendi Couture Spring 2023: Lingerie Dressing Meets the Red Carpet

“Minimalism” and “couture” are almost oppositional concepts. More often than not, a couture collection is an excuse to show off all the fashion tricks in a designer’s arsenal. But for his spring 2023 haute couture collection at Fendi, creative director Kim Jones decided he could let the handwork of his team shine without gilding the proverbial lily.

“This season, I wanted to concentrate on the techniques and craft of couture, with the lightness, fluidity, and attitude of today,” Jones said in the show notes. “It’s a celebration of the ateliers and the craftspeople who realize these garments, the intense work and emotional commitment to each piece that exists for both maker and wearer, and how the intimate traditions of the couture are both living and breathing.”

The end result were clothes which felt lighter and airier than those in most haute couture collections, but which were no less jaw-droppingly stunning. Jones took a lingerie-style approach to gowns, layering chiffon and lace throughout floor-length dresses. “The collection is an inner world made into an external one—both figuratively and literally—with a sense of underwear becoming eveningwear,” he wrote; those themes were most obvious in delicate, super-thin straps or gently molded satin cups built into the busts of gowns.

The beauty of Jones’s approach to silhouettes is this: while the same shape might appear more than once—for example, a strapless column gown, which anchored much of this collection—each one feels all the more special for its couture embellishments, like layers of sequins or intricately interwoven lace patterns. The draping here was most impressive, whether seen on a knotted hip held together by a crystal buckle or a dramatic, fluid layer of fabric dipping below the thighs.

Equally simplified was the set—a calm white room with a single light circling as the only statement-making element. This serene environment was perfectly suited to the color palette of the collection, a series of pale grays, watercolor pastels, and dusty mauves. A suite of gowns at the end featured multicolored floral elements, each of which appeared hand-painted.

While wearing lingerie-inspiring pieces might make one feel bare (for obvious reasons), the Fendi spring 2023 couture collection instead seemed like cocoons—clothes so intimate, they become one with the wearer, forming a kind of protective layer. And, even more importantly for couture, each individual garment was so intricate, you might have found yourself taking a second or third look up-close.

If all of this sounds like it might not work for the red carpet—that crucial outlet for couture garments—the metallic-brushed laces and sequin-covered numbers should change your mind. They definitely found fans in the many, many famous faces sitting front row.

Source: W Magazine

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