A turbaned girl in a burgundy ultrashort tunic—all bare legs and high heels—started the show off, followed by another in a purple, high-necked long-sleeved satin dress reaching below the knee. Welcome to the twilight zone! What was this? Why were nylon backpacks strapped to those tiny, bottom-skimming tops? Why were these looks mixed with forties-looking, rounded-shoulder dresses, blouses, and slim pencil skirts? And why all the strong reds, oranges, and jewel-colored satins for summer? Slightly disapointed with this one.
It's a tall order to stand out as a voice that champions understated luxury and a complete look aimed at grown women. But, season by season, Bottega Veneta has done just that. The designer's spring show worked beautifully with a subtle beige-through-rose palette, with elegance, and stunning detail in close-up. The finale incuded a summer evening gown. For a balmy midsummer night's party on the rolling lawn of somebody's estate, what could be more perfect than stripe shirtdress and a pair of flat sandals? The fact that Botegga conjured up an exact picture of his customer, and where she might wear his clothes, is a testament to his growing success.
Some in the States might be surprised to learn that La Perla has a ready-to-wear collection, but judging by the Italian TV personalities in the front row today, the brand's reach in its home country now extends beyond the lingerie drawer. That doesn't mean that the collection ignored its roots. On the contrary, it took a handful of spring trends—eyelet, pale neutrals, miniature florals—and sexed them up with touches of lace and generous helpings of bare skin.