A touch of noir, nocturnal romance, and delicate transparencies, the overarching mood at Gucci’s Fall Winter 2012 show was dark. Featuring materials like brocade and leather, velvet and silk in a palette of plum, black, brown and dark, dark green, one gets the feeling that the appetite for proud opulence has been more than satisfied.

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There was such an emphasis on romance that Frida Gianini weighed heavily upon this time around. But it wasn’t of the pastel, giggly and flirty sort. Instead, her interpretation of romance for this collection is a strong, passionate, deep nocturnal one, like in the Phantom of the Opera. There was power and strength, which lend themselves from the menswear and equestrian-inspired pieces, such as the military jacket paired with a long velvet skirt that opened the show.

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When the female form wasn’t encased in commanding jackets in brocade, shearling and fur, it was slouchily resplendent in loose, silky shirt-and-pant combos and flowy dresses with watercolour flowers in dark jewel hues against a canvas of midnight. And as the night progressed, feathers in iridescent midnight green began making their appearance; on jackets, skirts, and on dresses, like the morphing into a resplendent bird of the night.

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And finally, the pre-Raphaelite goddesses deigned to venture out in a series of billowy, light-as-air peekaboo gowns in double layers of tulle with embroidered floral patterns and micro crystals and sequins masterfully sewn by hand. Who knew that Gianini had such a beautiful, ethereally dark point of view of Fall Winter?

Images: Gucci