Sunday, April 1, 2012

Joanna Mastroianni Fall 2012: Inspired by Legendary Muse Iris Apfel

Joanna Mastroianni’s muse this season was the legendary 90 year old fashion icon Iris Apfel. Inspired by Iris’s unique personal style, Joanna imagined the different ways it might be expressed as Iris travels around the world. 
The journey begins in New York City, as strong gusts of autumn wind strip the leaves off the trees in Central Park, exposing a tracery of branches. Mastroianni transforms the delicate filigree into fabric, embroidery and beading on everything from evening gowns to necklaces.
Next, the snow begins to gently fall, and the ornamentation shifts to elaborate embroideries of opalescent seed pearls, creamy translucent glass, and shimmering silver, as dazzling yet delicate as sun on fresh snow.
Mastroianni’s muse then heads off to Paris, for an imagined evening in Maxim’s, adorned in darkly sophisticated dresses lavished with bronze, pewter, copper and burnished gold ornamentation. The evening glove returns as never seen before—faceted, feathered, beaded and bejeweled, a work of art in its own right. The skinny evening pant, cut along the lines of a pair of jeans, adds its off-hand attitude.
The journey continues on to Asia in black flashed with red, in jackets and tunics cut with seemingly kimono-like simplicity, yet structured with masterful seaming to enhance a woman’s body and accentuate her curves.
The colors—magenta deepened with black, a lustrous golden green, and a vibrant jade that can only be called peacock blue—are inspired by the human embodiment of the magnificent featured creature as she proudly struts through life’s journey in all her glory, bringing a sense of joy to all who behold her.
The collection is filled with Mastroianni’s artistry at every turn. There is a wealth of detail; all exquisitely executed by hand, all inventive, all one-of-a-kind. Fabrics that appear to be tufted were actually created by shirring, shredding and cutting silk organza into tiny strips, then embroidered with caviar beads onto sheer organza backing.
Faceted chunks of metal were covered with black leather, surrounded by more shirred organza and caviar beads, the leather giving the extensive ornamentation a modern cutting edge.
The most touching and brilliant moment was the finale where Joanna came out with all of her models and took Iris by the hand for a final bow. Everyone gave them a standing ovation both for the successful collection as well as for Iris, the fashion legend who inspired us all. 
Photo by Frazer Harrison
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