During New York Fashion Week, Alice + Olivia’s biannual presentation always promises themed perfection in everything from its set to its hair and makeup. And that has everything to do with founder and designer Stacey Bendet, who truly outdid herself with this year’s darkly sexy, Maleficent-esque collection. From full-length, embellished ballgowns to fur shrugs and moody brocades to feathered accessories, the Fall 2014 line corresponded perfectly with its overarching, fantastical theme.
At Alice + Olivia’s lively and crowded presentation, we snagged a few minutes with the lady of the hour, Stacey Bendet, to discuss her inspiration behind her grandest collection yet.
Lucky: What was your inspiration behind this fantastical fairy tale?
Stacey: The inspiration was truly enchanted. It was based on a book of dark fairy tales by Benjamin Lacombe—but they’re not stories, they’re just pop-up illustrations. The first page of the book is a butterfly and it pops up out of this girl wearing butterfly wings. I was fascinated by this book—by the illustrations, by the colors—so I started with that color palette and I realized I wanted to do a whole fairy tale story. It truly became about this royal decadence, so I started researching and playing with all these elements of Victorian detailing on dresses, collars, sleeves and jackets. It was supposed to lapse into this world of fairy tales, but also, it was just supposed to be about this really, truly royal fantasy moment as a whole. I wanted to bring each element of this fantasy into the every day world, so every kind of luxe, decadent element pairs back to something casual. Everyone has little Victorian elements of either a belt or a choker to bring in that detail.
Lucky: How did the hair and makeup tie into your theme?
Again, it was supposed to feel like this trippy, dark fairy tale, so we wanted to make the models’ hair really big and crazy and sexy, and then we wanted a dark lip so we could get that Maleficent feel.