New designer, new directive? At Azzaro, the answer is both yes and no.
Mathilde Castello Branco was named the brand's creative director last year
when the spot was vacated by Vanessa Seward, but the mandate remains
essentially the same: pretty party dresses and event gowns, with the crystal
strass embroideries that put the house founder's name in lights so many
Castello Branco, who hails from Lanvin, used the crystals sparingly and
with some wit. The bow at the neck of a simple dove gray dress was picked
out in stones, as was its tulle-covered peekaboo back, and the tiers on a
little black number were embroidered with the crystals in a subtle, dégradé
What felt newsy was a print of aces, diamonds, hearts, and spades—we can't
recall ever seeing a print at Azzaro—and a silver python used for a
sweetheart-neckline cocktail frock and a sleeveless coat-dress. Outerwear was
never part of Loris Azzaro's vocabulary, and it was the weak link here, but
overall, this new incarnation of Azzaro holds promise. Next on Castello
Branco's agenda should be finding a space that can accommodate the curiosity
seekers. The house atelier doesn't cut it.