A stable of talented designers contributed to the project, with looks from Vanessa Seward, Wanda Nylon, Ronald Van Der Kemp, Nina Ricci, Wales Bonner, Courrèges, Faith Connexion, Facetasm and Y/Project. Visitors to the Vogue Fashion Festival in Paris will be able to view each of these creations and for those who cannot attend, the looks will be highlighted in the November issue of Vogue Paris.
The designers were selected by Nadja Swarovski, Member of the Swarovski Executive Board, and Emmanuelle Alt, editor-in-chief of Vogue Paris. A key criteria was that they be either head designers of historic Parisian houses or founders of their own label. Vogue and Swarovski asked each designer to show their brand personality through their look and to be inspired by Swarovski’s amazing variety of crystals to push the boundaries of design innovation.
Inspired by a vintage photo of Catherine Deneuve, Vanessa Seward created a flattering contemporary take on a djellaba in denim with white opal Swarovski stones, sew-on crystals and beads. The designer said, “I find Swarovski’s white shades incredibly elegant, so I combined white opal with a touch of crystal shade and silver shade, and the result is stunning.” Seward previously collaborated with Swarovski in 2013, crafting a line for Atelier Swarovski.
Swarovski Collective designer Johanna Senyk of emerging brand Wanda Nylon created an iridescent look combining a crystal-encrusted turtle-neck bodysuit in electric green with a shimmering trench skirt, playing on the rainbow-colored refractions of Swarovski crystals. Ronald Van Der Kemp’s tailored kimono-gown is a bold graphic montage of leftover pieces of vintage and antique couture fabrics artfully embellished with sew-on crystals.
Embodying transformation, spirituality and authenticity, Grace Wales Bonner’s look includes a suit and crystal skull cap decorated in cowrie shell and Swarovski pendants, beads, pearls and fancy stones. Designer Faith Connexion likes to mix fine craftsmanship with innovative design techniques. For their Paris-via-Texas look they combined acid-wash denim and cow hide with fringing.
Based on the idea that the unbalanced is a new kind of balance, Facetasm crystallized three easy-to-wear pieces – a turtleneck, dress and jacket – playing with fabrics and textures. Facetasm commented: "Being asked to be a part of this collection felt like a new "knock on the door” of the fashion world for us. It was an honour to be able to use the crystals in our designs. I wanted people to feel a ‘Crystal Layer’ to the clothes.”
Excited by Swarovski’s ‘Crystal Fabric’ innovation, the designers chose to create an iconic Courrèges look in silver shade with a futuristic feel. The jacket and the mini skirt are fully embroidered while the shoes combine crystal fabric and leather. And with an urban aesthetic, Y/Project decided to integrate Swarovski crystals by creating a voluminous blouson lined with crystal-embellished zippers to create a sporty look.
Following his signature classic, feminine silhouette, Guillaume Henry created a seductively sparkling dress embroidered all over in crystal-coloured round stones. Guillaume Henry commented: “It is a great honor for me and the Maison Nina Ricci to have been chosen by two admirable and renowned institutions to take part in this project. For this collaboration I decided to entirely cover one of the dresses from our first collection in Swarovski crystals. By treating the crystals as a color rather than an embellishment we reinterpreted a garment which I believe is recognizable as an iconic Nina Ricci dress.”
At the conclusion of the Festival, the Vogue x Swarovski Crystal Collection will be donated by Swarovski to the Palais Galleria, the City of Paris Fashion Museum.