Lars Nilsson has come and gone at the house of Gianfranco Ferré since the Spring show in September. The Swedish designer, it seems, didn't see eye-to-eye with the design team put in place and trained by Ferré himself before he passed away last summer. It was that team who stepped in earlier this month, after Nilsson's Fall designs were scrapped, to, as the company put it, create a new collection using "the codes" established by Ferré over the course of his long career.
Much more than the Spring show had, this felt like a paean to the late designer, not least because his original sketches were projected onto the back of the runway. The girls wore a succession of familiar Ferré signatures, like demonstrative white shirts with sweeping collars, and dresses with architectural flourishesgeometric ruffles at the shoulder blades or a bodice pleated like a fan. Ferré's meticulous tailoring was literally turned inside out, so that the inner workings of a dress were exposed. Stylist Lori Goldstein, with whom Ferré once collaborated on advertising campaigns, was brought in to put it all together, but despite everyone's efforts, it never really jelled. Group projects of this kind rarely do. Until the house hires a new creative director, as it has said it intends to do, it won't move forward.