No. 21 Spring 2023 Ready-to-Wear Collection


Alessandro Dell’Acqua called his spring collection The Lovers. Is he in the mood for love perhaps? Backstage, he kept mum on the subject. But he offered an explanation as to why he was keen on exploring such a thorny, elusive and exhilarating theme. And even if he played discreet, not giving much away, he seemed to be quite the connoisseur on the matter.

“A lover’s moodswings are always extreme,” he said. “Male, female, whatever, it makes no difference. You go from joy to despair, from desire to rejection, from ecstasy to unbearable pain. Hate, rage, eroticism. Tragedy. Elation. Heartbreak. Moods are fleeting and can change in an instant, depending on a phone call or a text message,” he continued. “I’ve always loved the word ‘lover’ and I’ve been wanting for a long time to turn a collection into a cinematic rendition around this often ambivalent, ambiguous term, that can have such tortuous meanings.”

How can you translate a lover’s moodswings into an actual fashion piece? Dell’Acqua narration was allusive more than predictably descriptive, and the show’s flow was not divided into obvious clusters of too-easily identifiable themes. Yet there were hints and accents which helped connect the dots. A series of red outfits indicated the stages of passion and erotic entanglement, like a midi slim-fitted skirtsuit drenched in lipstick red sequins, or a flimsy vermillion number in see-through chiffon with a sexy peek-a-boo bra in shiny candy pink satin. Black meant rage, dismay, betrayal; a ruffled see-through evening dress in black chiffon which could be fit for a mournful widow conveyed “a mood of deception and sadness, as if she were all dressed up with nowhere to go.” Mournful feel aside, it looked quite sensual and highly covetable, dramatic yet light. A jacket/skirt ensemble was made in a black aluminum yarn that can be crumpled, torn and twisted if you feel mounting anxiety about your lover’s supposed betrayal.

White embroidered short dresses inspired by vintage bridal wear alluded to weddings, but not really at happy endings, as they were shredded and destroyed “in a fit of messy rage and despair because they were actually never worn as the marriage didn’t happen,” explained Dell’Acqua.

But Italians are nevertheless passionate about passion, and being in love is a national sport. The joy of feeling enamored (even of the most terribly wrong individual) fills life with zest and daydreaming, and Dell’Acqua acknowledged the cheerful mood with delicately colorful lingerie dresses artfully layered and slightly askew, as if hastily put on to run towards some kind of supposed happiness and adventure, because when love calls, who can ever resist it?

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