It was nice to see that the first look descending the grand staircase of 46 Rue Cambon was not a Fifties ball gown but a metallic cardi. The gowns came later. Welcome to Marco Zanini’s Rochas where things are always a little bit off as if to say, ‘I was aiming for proper but got distracted’. The aforementioned cardi, for example? Teamed with high heels. The couture-proportions floral coat that followed? Teamed with you-say-frumpy-I-think-fun flats. Sure, there was a more grown-up feel about this collection, less ‘quirky’ than others past but you still got the sense that Zanini’s girl would rather curl up on the sofa in her teddy bear bathrobe coat and silk PJs than go swirling in a big skirt.
Before we dismiss those gowns and full skirts entirely though let’s indulge in how gorgeous they were. A floral skirt was stiffly-pleated so it kicked and bounced and teamed with a belted ribbed cardi (yes, another one!) it looked both ‘now’ cool and ‘back then’ chic. Another in a burgundy furry material came with a Prince of Wales check gilet straight out of daddy’s closet. And yet, it was the more relaxed, trouser-focused looks that stole the show. And Zanini’s eye for colour too – pale blues against cashmere greys and burned yellows next to peach and maroon. A mannish check pea coat over a simple grey knit and some yellow textured trousers or a maroon blazer over a matching polo top and powder trousers, just kicking away at the hem, these were too cool for school. Zanini played with shapes, his Princess coats were folded and sculpted at the back and yet felt airy and light, but his finale silk satin gowns looked slightly awkward – not necessarily a criticism, you see. You wouldn’t expect an Oscar-worthy gown to walk down that staircase, were you now?