For the Rochas Spring 2014 collection, the classics made unconventional through obsessive fabric development, for one thing, and for another, a genuine penchant for the strange. For evidence of said strangeness, see the models’ slingback flats decorated with acid yellow or baby blue ostrich plumes that dusted the runway with each step. They gave everybody a good laugh.
“Nobody comes to Paris to see another white cotton shirt,” Marco Zanini said before his show. You’d better believe there weren’t any here today. As opposed to those funny flats, the shapes of the clothes were straightforwardly formal: a straight skirt here, a shirtdress there, a three-button blazer with a nice cut. It was the fabrics that were extreme. Extreme as in a jacquard velvet bonded to duchesse satin and thermo-sealed with Swarovski crystals. Everything glowed or glistened, from the hand-painted velvet roses on organza gowns all the way down to the sheer cardigan worn over a pleated lamé slipdress. The most riveting material was a chartreuse technical fiber—more tinsel-like than velvet—that Zanini used for an otherwise simple coat.
Zanini said he was inspired by Tennessee Williams’ play The Glass Menagerie, and that he wanted to capture the “translucent qualities of glass, frost, and crystals.” This wasn’t a bittersweet good-bye; it was a lovingly rendered, head-spinning sugar rush.