For Spring Summer 2014, Veronica Etro presents her vision of deconstructed elegance, where the simplicity of dressing contrasts with the detail of handcraft. The collection is rooted in an undeniable ease. Lines of formality and informality blur, allowing for a new,relaxed attitude to emerge. But the clothing is showered in a rich layering of influences - from Etro's own grandmother's patterned book shelf and the exotic blooms of Indo-China to the precious metal work of the Ottoman Empire - that create depth and intrigue. Etro's unique assembly of places and times creates a voyage that is layered with exoticism, femininity and luxury, and that literally shines with summer's optimism.
Etro's signature paisley is preserved in its classic guise this season, but refracted with a new lens. Hand sewn into complex collages with tie fabric patterns, exotic florals and the season's new figurative drawings, the new “print” is actually a splintered patchwork pattern. A play on scale occurs with a single giant dahlia that diffuses into an explosion of smaller blooms. Purposefully asymmetrical in their placement, the prints have an imperfect air and are trimmed in metal fringe or enameled metal mesh that blends into the pattern. Printed two piece skirts and tops function like a new cohesive tailleur. Strong colors, like lemon, coral, mint, lavender and sea blue, are mixed effortlessly with neutrals like sage, khaki and ivory.
Darkened and bleached silver metal creates a new, illuminating detail in the collection. Hand-hammered metal squares embroidered onto tulle, inspired by the intricate Ottoman Tally technique, creates an opulent sheer canvas on a dress, coat or on neck scarves. Metal is knitted with suede, cotton and satin ribbon into wide striped sweaters. Intricate patchworks of paisley printed silk, jacquard lurex and metal mesh, are featured throughout, creating frame-like patterns. A rigorously feminine touch is added with hand-dyed silk devore, billowing silk georgette and micro-paillettes dusted over paisley printed dresses.
The new ease of the season can be felt in simple shapes, many of which wrap around the body with a casual, comfortable air. Shawl-front halter gowns fall gently in a column to the ankle. The skirts, cut below the knee, look like draped sarongs but are in fact constructed. Belts appear to be part of a dress' construction. Details like scarf necks, flap panels and pockets on the front of evening gowns or backs of jackets, fracture the sense of formality. The new pant, in patch printed suede or silk, is wide legged and cropped, and worn with boxy open knit sweaters, suede vests or racer back tank tops.
Accessories mirror the new fascination with metal and patchworking. An ornate bleached silver metal is featured on belts, bracelets, earrings and on handbag straps. Exotic materials like python and sting ray appear on metallic leather sandals, both flat and with stiletto heels, or on cage heels. Clutches are crafted from an enameled metal mesh, while handbags feature patchworks of matte python and stingray, in dusty pastel shades, trimmed in metal.