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Roberto Cavalli

Tempting as it may be to marry Roberto Cavalli’s two key references, rock and baroque, into one portmanteau—rockoco (get it?)—this would reduce a lavishly developed collection into a hackneyed pun. It would also be ignoring the OTT emphasis on tiger striping. The favored house motif figured so prominently for Pre-Fall that you could reason it represented an affirmation of fierceness, an oblique homage to Bryan Ferry in his Roxy Music days, something far less literal, or all of the above. Whatever the motivation, it came to life as a fur treatment in beaver and mink on bomber and bag alike, as alpaca knitwear, and as a voluminous chiffon skirt bordered in baroque tracery. Similar baroque motifs repeated across a dense brocade coat, slinky stretch knit dresses, intricate body-baring lace, and a printed sequin tuxedo jacket that would have made Liberace swoon.

There were plainer pieces, too—if gold contouring on day-to-night blazers and culottes qualifies as plain. Gold-dusted snakeskin-print jeans, gold-flecked floral blouses, and gold-studded suede tilted the balance back again toward glam. But none of this felt as contemporary as the black eel skin, its papery patent paneling a perfect foil for a plush teal mink coat. As an A-line mini, it rocked.

Lastly, the atelier relied on labor-intensive hand-pleating for a grouping of monochromatic mermaid gowns. This was pure technique sans ornamentation, a breather from the baroque.

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