"Fluid architecture" and "decorated minimalism." Those were Tommaso Aquilano and Roberto Rimondi's talking points backstage at Gianfranco Ferré. Sounds tricky, but the collection, the duo's third for the house, was their lightest and least encumbered so far. Working with sheer, weightless organzas, gazars, and lamés in shades of ivory, nude, and gold, they whipped up airy tops, bubble skirts, and cocooning coats, along with frothy little party dresses. But if that suggests the designers were taking a completely straightforward approach, that wasn't the case. Pleating, folding, wrapping, and what looked like gold-leafing came into the picture, creating all sorts of surface interest. Sometimes a little too much: The bust of one evening number was awkwardly encased in thin metal tubes.
Addressing the tailoring portion of Ferré's legacy, the designers came up with a modern take on the suit while keeping the ultra-femme mood going. How? By adding peekaboo keyholes lined with satin lapels to blouses and draping their trousers with suggestive swags of fabric from a high waist to the hips.
Sandals with metal scaffolding for heels weighed down this gossamer-light collection. But overall, high marks.