Oscar de la Renta collection presentations can be pronounced permanently theatrical and rightly so, since the staples of all his work happen to be imaginative faille ball gowns with pleated tulle, sprinkled with delicate embroidery. Right before the Spring/Summer 2014 show, he reveals to us that the opulence he imagined for the season was inspired by two very famous portraits of the Fitton sisters, Anne and Mary, both ladies in waiting to the Queen. (Mary is rumored to be the Dark Lady of Shakespeare’s sonnets).
The Elizabethan motif, although present throughout the collection, was not at all domineering and was often saved for the fine points on otherwise current silhouettes: overexposed billowing sleeves on a playful lace blouse paired with a strict pencil skirt. More than a few superb couture ball gowns in a rainbow of colors, pleated voluminous skirts, and impressive tapestry made this collection a standout. Oscar did not fail to hit the season’s key trend: ladylike mid-calf-length skirt (in various shapes from pencil to trapeze to full), but in true Oscar fashion, most were more voluminous than not. He worked with an upbeat palette mixed with eccentric florals and polka dots – some spectacular contrasts. One of our favorite looks was the stately solid-colored cerulean blue strapless gown, short in the front, long train in the back, with exquisite draping and corsetry – and paired with monochromatic accessories.
The show ended in a dramatic tone with Joan Smalls in a canary yellow silk tulle glam gown crusted with black latticework and a cage veil of black tulle over her face. Elizabethan ending indeed.