The Scene: Marco Zanini's recent departure and highly-anticipated debut at Schiaparelli were casting a long shadow on Alessandro Dell'Acqua's first collection for the house.
The Look: Just when you think you know what direction Rochas is going in, it changes it up and as the Fall 2014 show proves, that sometimes happens within one collection. From oversized alpaca to PVC skirts and beading that was more dangerous than delicate, there was a lot to sink your teeth into. Dell-Acqua dispensed with the confectionary colors early on as light blues and pinks gave way to deep marine and jewel tones. A lovely black velvet and gray knit sweater was struck with the same affliction of over-layering, which has become so tiresome this season. It was worn over a beige wool peplum with a lumpy, brocade, below-the-knee skirt with metallic fringe detail, three-quarter length purple leather gloves and sharp, beaded shoes. When I say sharp I don't mean stylish, I mean beading that looks more like a medieval weapon than an accessory. While the goth detail was enjoyable, it was just one more extreme element in looks already piled high. Although there was some sleek tailoring — a cropped, beaded jacket and a long, blue, A-line coat — the silhouettes in general were so tricky, they were distracting. The beading headed for the same fate — beautifully done, but best when executed in relative moderation.
The Accessories: The crazy beaded gloves and shoes were the story here, and likely to be one of the biggest accessory stories of Paris, if sheer shock value is anything to go by. There were also some cat eye sunglasses.
The Beauty: Spidery statement lashes overwhelmed the natural skin and lip. More middle parts with glossy, "natural" waves. Nothing new here.
The Takeaway: Alessandro's debut for Rochas certainly won't be deemed a failure since he took many signatures of the house and tried to work his creative will upon them. With practice and perhaps a bit of editing, one could see how this would be far more successful in the future.
All images: IMAXtree