“This Fall/Winter 2020, we were inspired by Francesca DiMattio’s sculptures. Her work “imbues the decorative with strength and power.” Wedding-dress beads and basket weaving, often dismissed as mere decorations, transform into imposing structures, blurring what’s man-woman, old-new, high-low. DiMattio challenges the traditional norms of femininity. I remembered from studying art history how the work of Judith Leyster, one of the great Dutch Masters, was misattributed after her death simply because she was a woman. It’s a struggle that women artists have faced throughout history and still do to this day.
The collection reinterprets classic and nostalgic themes: menswear suiting cut with a softer shape, structural details played against fluid silhouettes, historic references reworked with modern ideas. All epitomized in the gray power suit, silk lace blouse and tall leather boots. Refined and lighthearted, especially the prints which were designed by DiMattio. Based off our shared appreciation of the history of Turkish, English and French porcelain, but here the colors and patterns are bolder and more exaggerated.
Equal emphasis is placed on bags and boots. The new Eleanor shoulder bag — structured and crafted from Italian leather. For the Lee Radziwill collection, new interpretations of the ‘70s saddlebag and an accordion shape. Every look is punctuated with a strong boot: mid-calf, riding, over-the-knee; pointed or tapered-square toe.
This morning, Alice Smith will perform Q-Tip’s version of the 1963 classic ‘You Don’t Own Me.’
Eleven of Francesca DiMattio’s sculptures are placed throughout the runway, courtesy of Salon 94 and Pippy Houldsworth Gallery.” — Tory Burch
Silhouettes: An exploration in proportion and form, the collection exudes a refined nonchalance. Caftans are layered over silky pajama dressing while tailored trousers are tucked into over-the-knee boots. High-collar jackets with sculpted shoulders offset effortless dresses. Architectural hemlines, exaggerated sleeves and collars give the collection depth and dimension.
Palette: Bursts of bright yellow, mint and petal pink pop against a subdued palette of cream, white, charcoal, navy and black.
Prints & Patterns: The collection features a series of prints developed by ceramicist Francesca DiMattio. The maximalist, exuberant prints—each based on a DiMattio sculpture—range from painterly florals to abstract takes on Sèvres porcelain. Plaids and stripes bring an understated nostalgia while a Delft-inspired blue-and-white tile print nods to Tory’s love of classic porcelain.
Fabrications: The textural play echoes the mixed-material composition of DiMattio’s sculptures with sumptuous velvet against cotton jacquard; cotton poplin layered over crepe de chine. Distorted paillettes cascade down silk satin and crepe evening dresses while intertwined strands of organza give knitwear a cotton candy-like quality. Trapunto stitching, smocking and sunburst pleats are seen throughout the collection.
Accessories: Down-to-earth yet elevated. Square-toed riding boots offer an appealing austerity while Lee Radziwill saddlebags convey a polished, Seventies-era louche. Architectural brass rings—a deconstruction of our iconic logo—round out of the collection.
Music: Alice Smith performed the 1963 classic “You Don’t Own Me,” produced and rearranged by Q-Tip. Additional music: “Can I Kick It?” by A Tribe Called Quest and “Nothing Burns Like the Cold” by Snoh Aalegra, featuring Vince Staples. Show music produced by Michel Gaubert.
Stylist: Benjamin Bruno
Location: Sotheby’s New York
Beauty: Makeup artist Diane Kendal and NARS Cosmetics; hair by Guido for Redken; nails by tenoverten.