Extraordinary, extravagant, regal…these are some of the words that are not enough to describe the Guo Pei Spring 2017 collection. The inspiration was Marie Antoinette. The venue was Conciergerie – a place where she was imprisoned before beheaded. The opening of the show was glamorous. She, the last queen of France, returned in a dress from phosphorescent fabric. The grey silk gown with the trailing sleeves and crown on the head was an unforgettable image. That image was so strong and at moments unbelievable. The theme was she and that was more than obvious, accompanied by Pei’s signature penchant for fantasy, jeweled embroidery, corsets and drama, of course. The whole show screamed drama for that matter. The show continued in the presentation of gowns. One of them was rigid, gold skirt that looked like a cupcake wrapper.
The other one had rich embroidery on it. There was a white domed dress with domed headpiece that looked like a headgear. Everything was so compatible to the St.Gallen Cathedral in Switzerland, a place where the queen has traveled to meet with a textile manufacturer Jakob Schlaepfer. It was then when woven gold fabric from metal fiber and silk thread was custom developed for her and the motif repeated on some of the drawings at the cathedral. The gold embroidery was used to enrich the multi layering and referred to the European monarchial dresses at the time. This spectacle looked lot more like a costume than couture, but the impressive handiwork and regal details cannot be underestimated.
The models were wearing gold platforms, at the same balancing crowns on their heads. The show closed with Carmen Dell’Orefice, the queen of the models as Guo describes her. She has the spirit of a queen, dedication and devotion and the scarlet gown with blood-red crystals was the perfect end of the costume ball. Everything was shiny, dark, back-to time journey, pulled amazingly close to the original, with a venue and inspiration that not many can so greatly combine and succeed at the same time. The queen was relived in her royal gowns, even though briefly, but with long-lasting impressions. The show will be remembered as a part of the fashion history.