Layering crystal upon crystal, Schiaparelli once again lights the way for their use in couture.
It was the mid-1930s when Elsa Schiaparelli spotted Swarovski crystal’s unique light-reflecting qualities; she was among the first to use them to create her iconic embroidered haute couture gowns. Eighty years later, as part of the famous fashion house’s Fall/Winter 2017/18 collection, Schiaparelli’s spectacular Crystal² mini-tunic has raised the bar once more.
Courtesy of Shiaparelli
What gives this dress its edge is the fact that the crystals are now as functional as they are decorative, since they’re entirely made up of Swarovski’s Crystal Fine Mesh that is further embellished with 3D crystal embroidery. It’s the first time Crystal Fine Mesh has been embroidered, and the result is sheer, shimmering brilliance.
For this collaboration with Swarovski, Schiaparelli design director Bertrand Guyon was inspired by 20th-century artist/designer Sophie Taeuber-Arp’s signature geometric approach to her art. Guyon created a hand-stitched patchwork of mesh in white, yellow, and pink shades of gold—rectangles of glittering pavé that provide a sinuous, iridescent canvas on which clusters of colored crystals shine like opulent brooches. With over 4.7 million facets refracting the light, it’s difficult to imagine how fashion could get any more brilliant over the next century of haute couture.
Courtesy of Marion Leflour