Photography by Magdalena Golembiewska


The models at Elisa Palomino SS12 were such a divine meeting of delicate fabrics, embroidery techniques and ornate headpieces - not surprising when the whimsical Victorian fairy painting movement inspired the collection. These pictures are known for their acute attention to detail, so it so fitting that our eyes wandered over the intricate trappings of each look.

The opening gowns were heavily decorated with creeping laser cut and appliqué white on black rose prints. We were introduced to the beautiful, branch-like and sizable flower headpieces from the very beginning and remained a constant feature. Their form so true, they could have been plucked from nature.

A harsh red hue brought about a change in the collection. The stark pieces carried floating 18th Century Chinese motifs depicting leather embossed pagodas structures and teahouses. The headpieces mimicked the transition with tall, silk pagodas structures. An Eastern influence remained while the details moved away from sharp laser cuts, becoming increasingly textured.

A series of tulle cocktail dresses brushed aside the Chinese essence and brought back the legendary creatures. Our ethereal women glided on the runway, swathed in spirals of the frothy fabric.

In our modern world of logical thinkers, there is no room for make believe or fantasy. Fairy painting was lost along with the waning of Romanticism, but Elisa produces a very covetable feel with the nostalgia of a vanishing way of life. White and ivory garments where richly hand embroidered with flowers, leaves and mid-flight butterflies in washed out natural tones. The last gown: a body conscious column of tulle, covered with the intricate stitching – 'I do believe in fairies'.


Text: Rosanna Cole  

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