It's as though Marchesa designers Georgina Chapman and Keren Craig have heard what we've all been talking about all these years. While the brand has always been a red carpet favourite, you can pretty much forget getting in on the action if you don't have pockets deep enough to pay the four figure starting prices. Thankfully, though, that will change with the launch of their upcoming affordable line and following on with that new accessibility, soon you'll be able to get the Marchesa smell too.
Last week WWD unveiled the bottle for their debut fragrance, Parfume d'Extase. 'Eveningwear evokes an emotion, and this scent does the same thing,' Chapman told the title. So if you think of iris, young violet leaves and freesia when you think of their gowns, you won't be disappointed, as they are the top notes that the fragrance includes. 'We didn't want anything too sweet. Georgina and I don't like perfumes that can smell sort of sickly, so that was very important when we were going through the process.'
We all knew it already but today Marchesa designers Georgina Chapman and Karen Craig officially confirmed that they are working on a diffusion line. What we didn't know is the price range, which the pair confirmed as being from $150 to $750 and that's pretty good considering that their dresses generally start at the £2,000 mark. WWD reports:
"It's going to be under the Marchesa umbrella, but with a slightly different feel," [Chapman] said. "We have been so specific for such a long time, and the idea to broaden out to a different consumer, and to our same consumer as well. We haven't really looked at that market yet. My dream is to give Marchesa many facets, and that's just one of them."
There's no doubt that the collection will be a success. There aren't many accessible brands that deliver great occasion wear so the collection so there will definitely be a demand for the line. 'I am not really a traditional American sportswear designer, so I am hoping Marchesa will have something to offer that is very different from what's on the floor at present.'
While Marchesa may be loved by women everywhere, not many people can afford the hefty price tag that naturally comes along with their clothes. Compared to other luxury brands the high price points at Marchesa do make sense to certain extent. After all, far from offering up expensive jeans and t-shirts (hello Balmain), their collections don't often extend beyond bridal wear and red carpet worthy gown, which are generally things you would expect to shell out on. If new reports are anything to go by though, that's all about to change.
This morning WWD confirmed that the brand are in talks with LF USA, the U.S. subsidiary of Li & Fung, about launching a new contemporary line and while both parties are staying quiet at the moment 'an announcement could be imminent.'
The line is definitely a good step. In this current climate accessible lines are a proving to be a real earner for even the big brands so it was only a matter of time before Marchesa followed suit. The brand is so well known for glamour so I'm sure that women will buy pieces from the collection to try and tap into that spirit. How designers Georgina Chapman and Keren Craig will translate the aesthetic of the mainline onto an affordable collection is the challenge.
I never have anything bad to say about Marchesa. Their collections tap into the child in me that loves all things fairytale and it's a formula that continues to work well for them. As always, the fantasy element was present in their fall offerings and translated particualrly on the four dresses that closed the show that were big enough to make the cast of 'My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding' smile. But it wasn't all drama and gowns, as designers Georgina Chapman and Keren Craig also sent out a selection of shorter styles that were beautiful but a lot more wearable.
Like Prabal Gurung, the collection played with contradictions and contrasts. The show started off in a while and gold colour palette with angelic lace embroidery and developed into darker looks like dresses in black lazer cut leather and lace.
Last night the Lincoln Centre in New York played home to the 2011 CFDA Awards. As we knew, Marc Jacobs picked up the Lifetime Achievement Award, Phoebe Philo was presented with the International Award and Lady Gaga collected the big 'Fashion Icon' gong at last night's ceremony.
Other big winners of the night include the Proenza Schouler duo who picked up the award for womenswear designer of the year. Accessories designer of the year went to Alexander Wang, Menswear Designer of the Year went to Michael Bastian and Eddie Borgo recieved the Swarovski Award for Accessory Design.
Donna Karan, Queen Rania of Jordan, Sarah Brown and Arianna Huffington
Fashion leaders came together for a cause this week, as Sarah Brown joined forces with Donna Karan and Arianna Huffington this week to host the first-ever Women: Inspiration and Enterprise Symposium in New York. The goal of the event? To celebrate female leadership in business, all while raising funds for the White Ribbon Alliance for Safe Motherhood.
A global patron for the alliance, Brown brought together a group of innovators ranging from Ashley Judd to Tavi to inspire other women from across the country. The event culminated in a rooftop fashion show featuring one-off gowns from women designers, including Vivienne Westwood, Georgina Chapman and Keren Craig of Marchesa, and L'Wren Scott. Next step? Auctioning the pieces online for the White Ribbon Alliance.
To top it all off, Estelle made a guest appearance to sing a few hits, which left the model representing Chloe dancing her heart out. A bit of inspiration, some solid fashion and a chance to let loose - not a bad combination for an autumn night in the city.
Last night saw Anna Wintour host the much anticipated Fashion's Night Out fashion show. The show - which is New York's largest ever public show - was designed to get the public excited for Fashion's Night Out which takes place in America on Friday.
Rachel Bilson isn't the only one with a column in American InStyle magazine. The actress is now joined by Marchesa designers Georgina Chapman and Keren Craig who will join the magazine in October.
The pair's column will come in a Q&A format and will tackle all of your styling questions. If you have any questions for the pair and want to be featured in the magazine, you can submit your questions today here.
"We'll be seeing some of those gowns on March 7," one seasoned fashion writer said at the W lounge at Bryant Park, after the Marchesa presentation at the Chelsea Art Museum. And we agree. Not that we actually question anymore whether starlets will be wearing the label to the Oscars (it's a given), but this season, Georgina Chapman and Keren Craig gave their clientele especially fluid and camera-grabbing styles to choose from.
Inspired by the courtesan Lola Montez (and no, we weren't familiar with her either), the Marchesa girls delivered a whimsical collection full of feathers, 3D-effect lace and lots of ruffles. An ethereal, Swan Lake-style minidress cinched with black grosgrain ribbon caught our eye, as well as the real showstopper of the collection: a silver bugle-beaded gown that could have been liquid metal. We're not sure who'll be sporting that to next month's Academy Awards, but we bet the requests have already flooded in.