Ten years on, Marchesa has stepped away from the red carpet, lowered the wattage on Hollywood glamour and celebrated its birthday with flowers.
Georgina Chapman and Keren Kraig, the duo behind the brand, claimed a “modern-gypsy Woodstock spirit”. But by coming back to show in London dresses that were a mass of embroidered flowers and only intermittently sweeping the floor, the Marchesa look seemed gentler and had more of an English free spirit.
A pre-dawn sky grey dress with full sleeves, and with pastel flowers and feathers cascading down the front, could only be destined for walking the bridal aisle. But many other pieces were light, short and summery – especially separates when a whorl of white flowers topped narrow trousers; or when a simple top teamed with a skirt was covered in flowers.
“It’s our tenth anniversary, we were coming back to London and we’ve always loved flowers – but this is more languid,” said Georgina backstage.
Designers Keren Kraig and Georgina Chapman with models
The collection was still full-on in terms of decoration, with intense handwork and some floral overload. But it felt as though the Marchesa pair were taking glamour on with a lighter touch. Three-dimensional birds flying across a black skirt were even slightly menacing. And by cutting down on sugar, the show had a sharper taste.