Being a British brand, there wasn’t a more fitting venue than the Embassy of the United Kingdom for Ralph & Russo’s autumn-winter 2019/2020 collection. The embassy gardens on the famous Rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré were set in a way that recalled a 1930s-style “soirée en plein air,” according to the show notes. Flora, fauna, the majestic opulence of the Art Deco era and a 90-metre runway all helped bring the scene to life.
Ralph & Russo’s return to Paris Haute Couture Week marks the twelfth season in which the luxury brand has featured as part of the Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture’s official schedule. For their first outdoor show, Tamara Ralph and Michael Russo looked to the Art Deco era for inspiration, while the inventive works of artist and designer Erté, who captured the period within his work, provided more for their vision.
Sensually draped and sprinkled with strings of pearls, the show-stopping gowns exposed elongated hourglass silhouettes and emulated Erté’s Les Bijoux de Perle. The lineup of white gowns also featured flowers delineated in mink, crystal tassels, layers of ostrich feathers and sparkling tiaras. The collection included daring shades of red, pink, yellow and aqua too, and they were fused in ombré hues. Furthermore, the elegant and sophisticated black bejewelled smoking jackets added a masculine edge.
Embellished in true Art Deco form with opalescent fan-shaped embroideries and designs that are geometric and spherical, this season’s collection translates the mélange of influences behind the Art Deco movement into a continued celebration of the modern female and her multi-faceted form.