Ladies and…well, mostly ladies, we have a winner. Marchesa has shown the PRETTIEST collection that I have seen in quite a while. In fact, Georgina Chapman may have stuffed her collection full of enough ‘pretty’ to choke a horse. In serious fashion, being described as “pretty” can be somewhat of a backhanded compliment – it implies a lack of innovation and an appeal to the fashion customer’s baser instincts. Pretty doesn’t make headlines. And then again, what we’re seeing here might just be way beyond a simple description of “pretty.” It might be way, way better than that.
These are the clothes of fairy princesses and movie stars, not of the likes of you and me. Not just because I can’t afford them, but because I have nowhere to wear them. In this 25-look collection, we have fur, maribou, bows, silk, sculptured tulle, lace, and pounds of sequins sewn onto a variety of fabrics. Marchesa makes the clothes that little girls hope to wear when they’re not so little anymore, but that too often life stops us from enjoying once we reach the appropriate age. They’re pure escapism mixed with flights of fancy, and in a fantasy world, I’d take one of everything. My love for Marchesa is only bolstered by the fact that, despite the obvious beauty of the clothes, there’s also a complexity in structure and idea that you simply don’t find in a lot of the other notoriously “pretty” fashion houses (Badgley Mischka, I’m looking at you). These aren’t glorified prom dresses; they’re for grown women that remember what it’s like to want to be Cinderella.