Daniel Roseberry’s Schiaparelli opened Paris Haute Couture week with a cosmic bang. Even before the models started their stalk through the hallowed halls of Place Vendôme, J.Lo, Hunter Schafer and Zendaya (channelling her Dune character Bene Gesserit with micro-bangs and a ruched satin pony-tail train) elevated things to new worlds. Navigating the tension between technology and creativity with the advent of AI, the collection that came after remembered Elsa Schiaparelli’s eternally surrealist genetics and famous fascination with the astrological. To the ethereal soundscapes of Ridley Scott’s Alien, Christopher Nolan’s Oppenheimer, and Gustav Holst’s ‘Jupiter’ movement from The Planets, Roseberry’s enrapturing space-age silhouettes begged the question: what can humans do that artificial intelligence cannot? One word: Schiaparalien.
Maggie Maurer stepped out in a off-white vest and ‘inside-out’ trousers. On one arm she held, not a bag, but a baby – a fake one obvs – swaddled in a thick layer of pre-2007 circuit boards and wires, form factors, flip phones and other electronic detritus encrusted between clusters of Swarovski crystals. The next look out was its mother(board) – an electrode dress with a signature keyhole clutch to match.
There were exoskeletal structures with bantu-style knots all over, gowns and pantsuits with gravity-defying breastplates and lustrous hourglass tailoring. Olivia Palermo, Karlie Kloss and Irina Shayk wore decadent alienoid space suits. Roseberry also referenced the Americana codes of his home state: Texas. Looks were injected with dressage plaits, equestrian fringe, silver-plated Western buckles and metal-capped cowboy mules.
Roseberry’s answer arrived, touched by Midas and extraterrestrial elegance. As the barrier between manus and machina blurs, couture can reaffirm the difference.
Photography courtesy of Schiaparelli.