Fendi makes bid for Oscars red carpet with high-drama evening wear

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<span>Photograph: Rex/Shutterstock</span>
Photograph: Rex/Shutterstock

Fendi, the Italian luxury brand now led by the British designer Kim Jones, made a bold bid for red carpet glory with an imperial procession of high-drama evening wear at Paris haute couture fashion week.

The lean, strong-shouldered silhouette of the iconic Academy Awards golden trophy echoed through a collection with its sights set on the Oscars red carpet. Bustier corsetry, swagged asymmetric draping and a Vatican-purple mini cape kept the dramatic tension simmering. Extra long skirts were cut to pool majestically as the wearer paused for the flashbulbs, reflecting light upwards from their satin folds.

With the recently crowned designer of the year at its helm, and with the fortunes of its iconic Baguette bag boosted by a starring role in the Sex and the City sequel And Just Like That, Fendi is a house in its pomp.

Fendi&#x002019;s extra long satin skirts are cut to pool majestically as the wearer pauses for flashbulbs.
Fendi’s extra long satin skirts are cut to pool majestically as the wearer pauses for flashbulbs. Photograph: Rex/Shutterstock

Still regal, if a little more low key, were pieces that nodded to classic black-tie menswear. A loose kaftan gown in matt midnight blue duchesse silk was edged with a stripe of jet black sequins, a finishing touch that echoed the sheen of a satin lapel on a tuxedo jacket. Jones, who divides his time between his home in London and the Fendi headquarters in Rome where he works closely with Silvia Venturini Fendi, has spoken of being inspired by the understated elegance of the Fendi family – “the way they can look so chic at work, and half an hour later they come to dinner a touch different, having changed the look”.

Related: Paris men’s fashion week AW22 : The key shows – in pictures

Haute couture week will close on Friday evening with a commemorative show in honour of Pierre Cardin, who died in December 2020 aged 98. The house is now led by the late designer’s great-nephew Rodrigo Basilicati-Cardin, who worked alongside his uncle for 30 years. The show is expected to include pieces designed by the late Cardin, alongside modern interpretations of the label’s space-age aesthetic, created by the current design studio.

London fashion week has announced a schedule of 37 live catwalk shows for its turn in the fashion spotlight next month as the industry moves cautiously back toward physical presentations, reflecting a consensus that digital versions have failed to entirely captivate audiences, despite their environmental and economic advantages.

Molly Goddard, whose exuberant tulle dresses are beloved of Rihanna and scored a starring role on screen in Killing Eve, will make a return to the catwalk, while the independent label 16Arlington will stage a show in honour of its co-founder Federica Cavenati, who died in November aged 28. But in a blow to the box office power of the London shows, neither Burberry nor Victoria Beckham, the city’s best-known fashion names, will take part.

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