Fashion Statement: The designers who think sparkle is for life, not just for Christmas

 

At this time of year, our minds naturally turn to sparkle. I say naturally but really it's the most far-fetched thing on earth, as we spend Christmas Day stagnating on the sofa in our trackie bums while the wind blows a gale outside and the sun refuses even to rise.

Nevertheless, designers' autumn collections are never short of a bit of razzmatazz for the "party season" (which is what the people who aren't on the sofa call this time of year). So it's even more interesting, then, that their summer collections should be chock-full of it too.

Bauble-encrusted cocktail dresses with stiff and ecumenical-looking carapaces at Fendi; tinsel-ish holographic organdie wrapped as tops, tunic dresses worn with shorts and flaring bell skirts in Raf Simons's debut at Dior; even studded metallic headpieces – for all the world like Stig of the Dump meets Pimp My Ride – worn with sporty space-age separates at Junya Watanabe.

Our obsession with sparkle is no modern affliction; men have been magpies since Midas. There was a pair of gold-soled slippers from the first century AD in the British Museum's Afghanistan exhibition last year. Sparkle is status, at its best in small glimpses rather than swathed all over – the undersole of an otherwise puritanical pilgrim shoe by Miu Miu; between the pleated folds of Roberto Cavalli's blinged-up pteruges-style skirts. Glimmering threads lurk in Lurex, a retro yarn making quite the comeback this season, thanks to Meadham Kirchhoff; shimmering silks and lamé at Viktor & Rolf and Alexander Wang.

In the past, designers have worked with metals more literally, to achieve sparkle and shine: chain-mail and tectonic dresses by Pierre Cardin, for example, and the non-ironic use of lamé by Halston at Studio 54.

For spring, Burberry's Christopher Bailey dressed models in that fabric, and they shimmered on the catwalk like sweetie wrappers.

Which, let's be honest, is as close as most of us will come to sparkle this party season: the Quality Street tin and its contents.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookPart of The Independent’s new eBook series The Great Composers
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Fashion

    Tradewind Recruitment: Year 3 Primary Teacher

    £100 - £150 per day: Tradewind Recruitment: Year 3 Teacher Birmingham Jan 2015...

    Ashdown Group: Lead Web Developer (ASP.NET, C#) - City of London

    £45000 - £50000 per annum + Excellent benefits: Ashdown Group: Lead Web Develo...

    Tradewind Recruitment: Key Stage 2 Teacher Required in Grays

    £21000 - £40000 per annum + Negotiable: Tradewind Recruitment: Key Stage 2 tea...

    Recruitment Genius: Software Development Manager

    £40000 - £50000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

    Day In a Page

    Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

    Isis hostage crisis

    The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
    Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

    The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

    Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
    Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

    Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

    Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
    Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

    Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

    This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
    Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

    Cabbage is king again

    Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
    11 best winter skin treats

    Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

    Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
    Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

    Paul Scholes column

    The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
    Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

    Frank Warren's Ringside

    No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
    Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

    Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

    The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
    Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

    Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

    Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
    Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

    Homeless Veterans appeal

    MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
    Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

    Comedians share stories of depression

    The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
    Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

    Has The Archers lost the plot?

    A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
    English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

    14 office buildings added to protected lists

    Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
    Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

    Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

    Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee