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July 13 2014

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All That Glitters In Cannes Is Carine Roitfeld’s Gold Fashion Show

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Karolina Kurkova wears Roberto Cavalli at the Ultimate Gold Fashion Show in CannesWhen a good cause (amfAR) and a major industry figure (Carine Roitfeld) come together, it’s a given that the fashion world will line up to lend a hand. And so it was at “The Ultimate Gold Collection” fashion show that Roitfeld staged at the nonprofit’s Cinema Against AIDS Gala at the Cannes Film Festival last night. The show included golden looks from Tom Ford and Thom Browne, Versace and Valentino, Marc Jacobs and Moncler, Dior, Comme des Garçons, Prada, Ralph Lauren, and Rick Owens—a group that becomes even more impressive given that they represent less than one third of the show’s participants. Add in the twenty-two additional jewelry and accessory brands, the glossy Gianvito Rossi heels…

Suffice it to say, with LoveGold.com as one of the evening’s three title sponsors, the theme was pretty much preordained. Having soft-launched around award season earlier this year, LoveGold is being positioned as the creative, community online platform for the World Gold Council. LoveGold helped support the accessory creations, in addition to hosting the Livestream on its homepage.

“For certain designers, the cost of gold is a barrier to entry,” said Sally Morrison, LoveGold’s director of jewelry in the U.S. “We were interested in creating a sort of incubator program where we offered gold loans for jewelers we were interested in to allow them to work in the medium and de-risk it for them. That coalesced very nicely with designers [Carine] wanted to put in the show.”
A gold bangle by Aurora Lopez Mejia is put on backstage
Jeweler Ana Khouri has worked with gold since launching her namesake jewelry line; for her, it’s just an extension of her sculpture background. Khouri represents the new generation of precious-metal designers, one whose mandate is as much about responsible gold sourcing as unconventional multi-finger rings. “I think gold is a universal language; it really connects people. And how amazing it is to get all this talent together with gold as the link,” said Khouri, before taking her architectural cuffs to be paired with a J.W. Anderson ruffled look.

“There’s something about gold that’s just so timeless and elegant,” said Karlie Kloss, one of the many models who have crowded the Croisette in the days leading up to this evening’s event. For the show, she wore a filigreed necklace by the Indian designer Tarun Tahiliani in her hair. “I was aware of the fantastic workmanship possible with gold,” the designer said. “But it slid to a precious base for necklaces and jewelry, and on its own, it was considered more traditional. It slipped out of the fashion sensibility in a sense.”Karlie Kloss wears Tarun Tahiliani at the Ultimate Gold Fashion Show in Cannes
Well, not anymore. Just witness the headdress of gold flowers designed by Khouri that Giovanna Battaglia wore on the red carpet—or, for that matter, the spiky Mohawk by Stephen Jones that Sarah Jessica Parker wore to the Met Ball. But even Roitfeld, who had three months to assemble and review all the designs, seemed surprised when such a gold-heavy show proved free of flash. “It all looks monotone; everything matches quite well altogether; and it’s not as tacky as you would imagine gold,” she said before the gala got underway, dressed in a Comme des Garçons top that exposed a ring of tanned midriff and a taupe ruched Rick Owens skirt. But maybe even flash wouldn’t have been entirely unwelcome. “Minimalism is a little finished,” she declared, hinting that the proof will be in her next issue of CR Fashion Book. Let the gold speculating begin.

Click here for a slideshow of looks from the runway, plus a selection of the jewelry made for the occasion >

Photos: Courtesy of LoveGold

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