Wallis Simpson’s aristocratic elegance served as inspiration for the Alberta Ferretti pre-fall collection, presented on the runway for the first time in Milan Friday at the company’s palazzo.

The cozy, wrap-around shapes of the outerwear, which included cashmere capes and coats along with opulent fur pieces embellished with chiffon intarsia, were balanced by Twenties elongated silhouettes of flowing chiffon dresses, decorated with Art Deco embroideries and lace inserts.

Traditional men’s fabrics were given a delicate, romantic spin, as seen on a look consisting of Prince of Wales fluid pants worn with a chiffon blouse featuring the same pattern, or on a girly chiffon knee-length dress.

Ferretti injected the same upscale yet comfortable mood into the eveningwear, which included a chiffon gown with an Art Deco-inspired embroidered pattern unconventionally worn with a wool tricot shawl, and sparkling, sequined loose pants matched with a fox fur coat.

Before the show, the designer fluttered backstage between the likes of Solange Knowles, Andie MacDowell’s daughter Sarah Margaret Qualley and model Florence Brudenell-Bruce. “They are all different, but they all have style and strong, daring personalities,” said Ferretti, who asked 17 “It” girls to walk the runway wearing limited edition, demi-couture pieces that same evening.

“Heels are my second nature,” said Knowles, defining herself as more “excited” than nervous. “Modeling, there is a different sense of focus compared with performing, which I find more spontaneous, less rehearsed. My goal now is to stay on my two feet,” added the artist, whose next album is out in April. Qualley, who modeled the Philosophy line in New York in September, is still in high school but is steadily building her portfolio, as her next gig is an undisclosed show during couture week in Paris this month. Brudenell-Bruce, best known as Prince Harry’s girlfriend, conceded she gets a lot of personal questions. How does she deal with them? “I never answer them,” said Brudenell-Bruce, who just wrapped up a campaign for Marks & Spencer and also is as an art consultant.

Later, Ferretti treated Brudenell-Bruce and her peers, which also included Tali Lennox, Amber Le Bon and Indian singer and actress Kanika Kapoor, to a dinner at Da Giacomo Bistrot, where Kapoor staged a brief impromptu performance.

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