When you think of vibrant animal prints and high octane fashion that sends pulses racing, who is the first designer that comes to mind? Roberto Cavalli of course. Since the brands inception in 1970, Cavalli has been the go-to-brand for celebrities from dressing Kim Kardashian at the 2015 MET Gala to dressing Jennifer Lopez and Naomi Campbell for numerous red carpet appearances and designing Beyonce’s famous ‘Lemonade’ yellow ruffle dress.
Powerful sexy women flock to Cavalli for the exotic-printed silk kaftans, perfect for yacht vacations in St Barts and Monaco and the sexy leather jackets and tight fitting dresses that perfectly highlight every curve. For men, the menswear collection equally has a wild and exotic side, with silk leopard print shirts, distressed jeans and fitted studded leather jackets that inject an element of rock ‘n’ roll.
In July 2017, Roberto Cavalli decided to take a new approach in its designs by appointing a new creative director- Paul Surridge. Surridge has previously designed for menswear collections at brands that are typically minimalist such as Calvin Klein, Jil Sander and Z Zegna . Having such a radical change in creative direction and fresh ideas is what the brand needed to open up the market to a younger audience. Typically to wear Cavalli, you have to be unafraid of taking risks and confident as many of the pieces are extremely eye-catching and daring. With the appointment of Paul Surridge, the brand has continued with animal prints, taking inspiration from archive collections but has made pieces more casual and wearable.
The current Spring Summer 18 collection has been inspired by the film Basic Instinct, particularly Sharon Stones infamous character- the sexy and seductive Catherine Tramell. The collection features skin-tight dresses, tailored coats, fringed leather shirts and spray on effect tops. But all of these have a more cleaner and minimalist look- showing a lot less skin than previous collections. For the Autumn Winter 18 collection, Surridge focused on a darker colour palette consisting on monochrome, purples and browns.
To showcase the current and new collections Paul Surridge along with Princess Leila al Senussi of Libya hosted a cocktail party at the London flagship in Sloane Street on May 23rd. The event featured delicious canapes, flowers galore, cocktails and a live DJ set by Lady Mary Charteris. Guests were invited to speak with Surridge about his inspiration behind the collection while exploring all of the fabrics and designs instore. Surridge exclusively told London Oli that the slightly more understated new collections have helped broaden up the market for the brand, introducing a younger clientele who feel empowered by the brands exotic designs.
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