Emilia Wickstead pressed her Italian background into action for a collection that was inspired by her love of postwar Italian cinema, and the sizzling styles that actresses such as Monica Vitti wore on screen.
“I’m passionate about Michelangelo Antonioni’s films “La Notte” and “L’Avventura,” and this season I focused on the women,” said Wickstead, who showed the collection by appointment at The Ritz hotel, and created a digital film with a background inspired by the checkerboard motif in “La Notte.”
Wickstead created hand-painted checkerboard patterns for curve-hugging dresses, long gloves and gowns, and whipped up hot little tops and slipdresses with spaghetti straps that recalled the outfits Vitti wore in the film about a crumbling marriage.
Tailoring played big, too: the slim houndstooth or camel pencil skirts had an understated sensuality, especially when worn with high-collar shirts or knits. Other standouts included a long, dusty pink overcoat and a lineup of neat suits with long jackets and slashed skirts.
The palette was powerful with pops of pea green, hot pink and blood red, the latter of which spilled across a roomy suit and delicate dress with a shawl around the shoulders.
Wickstead’s slim, sexy, body-con silhouettes were the standouts, and looked more youthful — and dramatic — than the wide, flared skirts for which the designer is known.