Rafael Cennamo set his sights high for this fall’s collection by creating dresses that echo the beauty and opulence of one of the most famous rooms in the world. Drawing inspiration from the Hall of Mirrors in Versailles, the designer created gowns of royal proportions calling it “21 Shades of Gold”. The title of his collection pays homage to the 21 mirrors found on each arch in the famed and historical ballroom while foreshadowing the color palette for his collection. Every gown and detail of the collection was created using various shades of gold down to the manicures and sparkling champagne. The Box at Lincoln Center has never looked so glamorous.
Pairing textures, fabrics and embellishments, this collection was luxurious and interesting down the final detail. Aside from the similar color palette, no two dresses were alike. Silhouettes ranging from mermaid to ball gown perfectly displayed the focal points of each gown. Every dress surprised and amazed the on lookers as the attention to detail became apparent. Elaborate beading and gold leaf work rivaling that of Faberge were majestic and fit for a queen. Models towered like glittering sky scrapers in sky-high gold platforms showing off the remarkable craftsmanship.
Sculptural masterpieces by Amir Baradaran worn by some of the models were created out of clockwork gears into brilliant fascinators. The bronzed headpieces were inspired by the “passage of time” as the gears of the clock showed. The combination of the Victorian French gilded gowns with the futuristic and industrial evoked a conversation amongst the crowd. Not only was the collection beautiful, it was also well thought out and creatively coherent. The message was loud and clear, as time goes on beauty remains the same.
The beauty regimen backstage was quite labor intensive. Cennamo teamed up with the nail polish brand, Zoya, for a golden topcoat called “Maria Luisa” giving the nails a glittering finish. Makeup by Bobbi Brown was bold and daring. The makeup team used a heavy charcoal eye shadow that covered the entire lid for a powerful eye and added to the glamour using a ruby red lacquer on the lips. To intensify the fierce glare of the models, gold metal adorned the eyebrows contributing to the industrial aspect of the headpieces. The combination of the slicked back hair by Aveda and the daring makeup made for a very futuristic and dark look contrasting with the lavish details on the gowns.
In Rafael Cennamo’s case, contrary to the popular quote, all that glitters is indeed gold. The array of gold and variety of textures and embellishments coincided to create an authentic tribute to Versaille’s Hall of Mirrors. These gowns will certainly be worn to parties of epic proportions and garner much praise. The designer surely wins gold for his opulent and ornate collection with a heavy emphasis on detail.