Are you ready to cruise some more? Bottega Veneta's 2010 Cruise collection has docked, and it brings us important lessons in colors and tailoring. The colors — purple, red, chocolate brown — aren't the norm for resort, but they're luscious nonetheless. Designer Tomas Maier took cues from the menswear line and delivered sleek tailoring with sporty undertones. Chanel Iman and Olga Sherer model tailored blazers, pleated trousers, draped tops, platform sandals, and glam bags. Does this collection float your boat? Click through then vote.
>> INSIDER WIRE —It's rumored that Harvey Weinstein helps get his wife Georgina Chapman's Marchesa creations on the red carpet, but another Francois-Henri Pinault definitely helps his wife Salma Hayek out with red carpet fare. For this year's Golden Globes, she says, "Francois was my stylist. It was Christmas and I was just overwhelmed with so many things to do. He said, 'Let me help you. How can I help?' And I said, 'Well, I have to pick a dress for the Golden Globes.' So Bottega Veneta sent swatches and sketches, and François worked with the designer Tomas Maier, and he took care of everything." [The Dish Rag]
>> Tomas Maier is ever working the understated, the investment dress angle at Bottega Veneta — and the Grace Kelly twist he took for Fall 2009 seems so right. The gauzy goddess gowns with rectangle-shaped tiers in the skirt were full-on glamour of the best kind; sure to be snapped up for a red-carpet appearance here, an editorial there. But even the simple chocolate nappa leather or mauve velvet strapless dresses resounded — warm tones in a season full of cold blacks and grays. Resisting full-on ladylike, Maier slipped in "sly fetishistic" underwires and seams cupping the breasts into his dresses, and first-hand viewers called the collection "breathtaking" and "dreamy." The only lack of beauty shown? Apparently the pit photographers screamed at the models in Italian, and the "front row was appalled."
Bottega Veneta has become something of an obsessive secret for the most discrete members of the luxury class thanks to Tomas Maier's design restraint. Except of course that secret has helped sales soar as a heretofore ignored class of fashion consumer, those who askew flash and logo, flocked to the label.
This may seem a strange comparison but Bottega Veneta is American Apparel for the rich. It is basic, understated, comfortable, and constantly updated for the times without sacrificing its inherent classicism. And whether you are hipster or socialite, artist or corporate titan, one needs beautiful basic Platonic ideal of clothing fashion. Add to that fact that Maier is from a class of designer's designers for whom less is more, a well placed dart here, a tricky seam there, and you have a brand that is enjoying a new golden age. Perhaps this subliminally inspired Meier's Spring 2009 collection as the tawny, coppery and yes golden tones of the collection evoked a kind of rich Roman Holiday inspired pastoral life of simple beauty. Given that Rome has given us so much of our classical ideals of beauty we can only say well played.
On another note, do not forget that Rome is also home to some of our most perverse political machinations. That Machiavellian playbook is very much in effect at these Italian fashion houses now that Patrizio Di Marco, Boettga's former CEO is taking over Gucci from Mark Lee. We would like to know what internal Brutus sacrificed the extremely capable Lee. And we can only hope there is not a Brutus lurking for Meier. It would be a shame to lose this kind of genius for some political animals ambitions like we have lost Lee.