The tableau that greeted guests arriving at the 18th-century Hôtel de Gesvres for the Luisa Beccaria couture presentation was of a bridal gown on a mannequin, its train artfully arranged around it, and the wedding veil slung over an antique stand — the very dress British royal Lady Gabrielle Windsor wore for her May wedding.
The challenge that Beccaria and Lucilla Bonaccorsi, her daughter and codesigner, had set themselves was “to convert these dresses that were so heavy and difficult to wear into something that is like a breeze,” Beccaria said. “Sometimes, with a special dress, you have to pay [for the occasion] by being uncomfortable.”
As ever, the handwork was exceptional, in its breadth and detail. Great swathes of tulle were embroidered with minute flowers, giving the notion of polka dots on a latice. Wisterias in bloom were rendered in ribbon embroidery, climbing and unfurling around trellises. The color palette was taken from the hues of light in various settings and times of day, offering a range of blushing pinks, blues and whites.
One tulle gown was a rendition of a dusky sunset sky, all pale pinks with a hint of violet creeping in the middle. Another was cut from the palest pink silk and wouldn’t have looked out of place in a period portrait. Freshest in the posy was a jumpsuit in silk fil coupé georgette, the raw edges outlining the floral motifs, which was the couture version of that elusive day-to-night outfit option. Light-as-air options for women who breeze through life.