Why Deco Now?
By RUTH LA FERLA
Every fashion designer, they say, is an architect manque, intent on imposing a structure on the wayward human form. That observation seemed especially apt in a season of spring runway shows filled with dresses constructed to glide over the body and embellished to echo the linear symmetry of Art Deco design.
Frida Giannini of Gucci was but one in a handful of influential fashion makers to embrace the hedonistic spirit of the Jazz Age, releasing on her catwalk in Milan a succession of free-spirited flapper dresses emblazoned with the outlines of the Chrysler Building and other Deco monuments. “I like the architectural shapes,” Ms. Giannini said, “especially the New York skyscrapers of the period.”
The Chrysler Building was a touchstone at Etro as well, where Veronica Etro showed block-print geometric designs inspired by that silver-tipped landmark, as well as black-and-white graphics on a kimono coat, and a sinuous charmeuse evening column paired with a fringed bed jacket.
Louche references to the speakeasy age resonated in the New York collections, too, as designers as disparate as Marc Jacobs, Tory Burch and Ralph Lauren offered drop-waist looks trimmed with bows and siren-y sequined Deco motifs.
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