” Eating is not merely a material pleasure. Eating well gives a
spectacular joy of life and contributes immensely to goodwill and
happy companionship. It is of great importance to the morale. »
Elsa Schiaparelli, Shocking Life, 1954 ”
The very essence of Haute Couture is about creating the extraordinary out of the ordinary. The idea of a table laid out for a feast gives life to a collection full of grace. Each course is transcended by delicate opulence. Beauty and good taste merge to match exquisite silhouettes awakening the senses. The delectable can only be touched with the eyes. Indulgence challenges one’s taste. Yesterday the basement of Elsa Schiaparelli’s hôtel particulier was made into a trattoria to host intimate dinners, and today enjoying a great meal with friends may strangely become an act of resilience.
Elsa, Louise & Gala are like alchemists’ cooks. Art plays with the artistry and joy of feasting. Louise Bourgeois manipulated kitchen textiles for her works with fabric. Today stripes of 19th century tea towels spin a cobweb on a structured jacket. Gala Dali’s recipes were a true source of inspiration for her husband’s surrealistic compositions. Now fruits, vegetables and lobsters are mixed into motifs taking on their textures, shapes and colours.
Lightness and transparency renew the verticality of the Schiaparelli style. Shocking pink silk cigaline stretches in cartridge pleating and plissé soleil. A breeze of hemp fringes echoes raw linen braiding. The sensuality of natural materials caressing the skin uncovers the underlying tension typical of the Schiaparelli allure. Gold-painted porcelain embroidery is crocheted in silk yarns. Savoir-faire and sensibility meld in rare concoctions. Multi-coloured nappa leather is appliquéd and inserted to reveal a lavish dinner table. A biker jacket shows a poetic sun in shafts of wheat and raffia.
Jewelry is reinvented as an amuse-bouche: hearts pierced with shrimp, winged padlocks mounted with broken eggshells or iris’ elixir. T-bar pumps with 3D printed peas-in-a-pod heels feature a deconstructed face on the front. A wicker picnic basket is transformed into a Stamp clutch stamped with Elsa’s profile in enamel becoming a real Gala dinner invitation…