Set to a hauntingly evocative choir-infused orchestral score, Kim Jones presented his second haute couture offering for Fendi via a 12-ish-minute film inspired by Pier Paolo Pasolini and directed by Luca Guadagnino. The set, a dreamy labyrinth-like other world of Roman modernist architecture proved the perfect backdrop to Jones’s triumph of artisanal craftsmanship. While his debut traced his transition from England to Rome, the FW21 offering sees him settle in the Eternal City.
“Pasolini observed Rome become modern – and that is what is happening to me: connecting eras, the old with the new, the past with the present,” reads Kim Jones’s show notes. “Rome is a fascinating city because it has so many pasts – and I was drawn to Pasolini because I have always been inspired by his vision of the world.”
Captured through Pasolini’s perspective on reality, an opening look of a tonal white leather coat with python application emerges through a curved opening, shortly followed by a men’s suit with Greek garland motif intarsia. The same motif features on a strapless dress, accessorized with a cuff in brass Crema Marfill marble inspired by the drapery and togas of Ancient Roman statues. Delfina Delettrez’s jewelry throughout was a fitting addition to a collection that merged the past and present: beautiful Amphora-inspired earrings were cut with the Fendi logo and worn asymmetrically.
Tulle ruffles, draping, gold macramé, intricate embroidery, ostrich feather applied silks, organza embellished with mother-of-pearl flowers, crystal beading – Jones’ certainly delivered couture techniques and materials, and did it with flair. Standout looks included a floor-length multicolored gown constructed of tiny silk organza handmade fringed stripes; a cut-out intarsia design coat made of leather, suede, and shaved mink all layered and singularly attached for a total construction time of 2,400 hours; and a strapless dress with drape back in Dégradé embroidery from pink to black, paired with black opera gloves – simply iconic.
The cast was equally prominent, including Kate Moss in an organza mink petal coat with 27,000 elements layered to create a flower explosion, and Amber Valetta, in a printed cape dress in silk Mikado and crinoline. After all, this was clearly a celebratory collection – of icons, Rome, heritage, modern design, and thoroughly complex craftsmanship.