Fausto Puglisi tried something different at his third runway show for Roberto Cavalli.

September 28, 2022

Fausto Puglisi was thinking about the 1940s and ’50s, when the high glam of the costume designer Gilbert Adrian gave way to the voluptuous precision of Alfred Hitchcock favorite Edith Head, as the inspiration behind the Roberto Cavalli Spring 2023 RTW collection.

Puglisi reproduced Adrian’s famous hourglass silhouette on cocktail dresses with midriff defining sashes, adding Tony Duquette-ish pineapple or palm tree brooches to focus attention on the waist. The point of looking at that time period, aside from its obvious fabulousness, was to capture a bit of its campy optimism too. “Covid, post-Covid, war, hate… I’m really disgusted,” Puglisi said, claiming “the positive American way” of that time as a balm for today.

He opened with a white jacquard sheath that Head would’ve given the nod, followed by an understated cotton poplin blouse and an almost sober silk moiré shift bisected vertically between black and white. For a modernizing casual touch, there were long pleated skirts worn open over built-in shorts, done up in more of those Duquette pineapples. The painterly print found on a long silk slip dress and a pair of high-waisted jeans was lifted from a 1979 collection by Roberto Cavalli—he could do angelic as well as wicked.

In the end there were quite a few leopard spots, and a fair number of lycra catsuits, too. A more intimate, better lit venue without such a slippery runway wouldn’t have hurt either. But Puglisi deserves props for going off—way off—the Cavalli script. So long Glamazon, hello ice queens and camp princesses.

Get an exclusive behind the scenes look of the Roberto Cavalli Spring 2023 collection by Fausto Puglisi.


Receive direct access to exclusive interactive online shopping, latest designer collections, celebrity features and collaborations, and daily fashion news.