The codes of the house of Vionnet – fluidity, femininity and pure cut – are the foundations of Barbara and Lucia Croce’s debut Fall collection. These traditions are mixed with a contemporary focus on tailoring – hard versus soft, giving a twenty-first century strength to the Vionnet woman.
As always with Vionnet, fabric is the starting-point, including specially-developed three-dimensional jacquards, compact wool and supple leather and fur, all magically given the softness of Vionnet’s signature crêpe, crêpe de chine and georgette.
A modern silhouette cannot exist without outerwear: the ‘Sartorial’ shoulder, sharply tailored, is the anchor for blazers and sweeping greatcoats that are otherwise an exercise in ease, falling gracefully against the body. Drapery is key, but it is drapery re-imagined for today’s wardrobe. Lines that are severe and geometric in the flat fall against the body to form natural shapes, rectangles of cloth ruffle into peplums, revers of coats curve in a single unbroken sweep. Evening relies on a tension between the masculinity of Le Smoking, and the hyper-feminity of draped goddess gowns. Silhouettes are constantly cut to elongate the body.
Intarsio is a central decorative motif, utilising cloth alone to create pattern. Contrasts of colour and texture are pieced together intricately, the seams themselves defining the graphic decoration. When embellishment is used, it is integrated into the garment, sequins forming an articulated panel and sequins multi-layered on a bodice. The concept of Intarsia is carried over to accessories: handbags are inlaid with leather, heavy matte-brass cuffs inset with stones. Shoe heels and minaudiere clutches feature polished panels of tiger’s eye and zoisite.
Like a heartbeat, the history of Vionnet beats through the collection. The signature neckline, drawn from Madeleine Vionnet’s 1930s work, is cut away at the nape and rises into two points at the throat, slashed downwards into a V – V, for Vionnet. It appears on day-dresses, jackets and coats alike. That elegant elongation is echoed in the triangular heels of footwear, streamlined and tapering backwards on low ankle-strap ballerinas, court shoes and a high-heeled boot cut like a man’s oxford with dropped fabric detail.
In this collection, Barbara and Lucia Croce reintroduce the original 1919 Vionnet logo – a woman raising the straps of her dress above her shoulders, dressing herself in a period when that alone was a revolution. Today, the dress alone remains, an outline, an inspiration, a graphic reinterpretation of the past embossed on box-calf and printed-lizard handbags for a modern Vionnet woman. The finishing touches to a collection where the only reference – and the only reference needed – is Vionnet.
Press information – KARLA OTTO – Stefano Pitigliani – +39-02-6556981