This season, the question of ‘to runway or not to runway?’ has loomed over fashion month. For Daniel Roseberry at Schiaparelli, the answer seemed inevitable. He is, after all, a man who turned the digitally-released lookbook into something of an art form. His collection images, which he often shoots himself, tend to explode all over Instagram in a way few non-runway releases are ever able to. His collections are a celebration of intricate, uncanny detailing, and his high-contrast, super-stylised portraits are often the best way to showcase them.
For Spring/Summer 2022, this was true once again. Tapping the photographer Nadia Lee Cohen and models Dilone, Rouguy Faye, and Adesuwa Aighewi to front, Roseberry presented another remarkable collection via lookbook (though in Paris he also opened Schiaparelli’s Place Vendôme headquarters to show the collection to press in a salon-style setting). Schiaparelli’s heritage is rooted in elevated surrealism, and it’s an archive that Roseberry has relished experimenting with—be it the gold ‘lung’ necklace Bella Hadid wore as a breastplate to Cannes, or the hulking green dress Kim Kardashian wore last Christmas.
This time around he evoked a “David Lynch holiday” (his words)—the opening look saw Dilone don a Phantom of the Opera-esque mask and a cartoonishly boxy cropped blazer. Then Lee Cohen evoked ‘70s salon glamour in a resplendent white column gown and silk turban. ‘Cone bras’ in homage to both Jean Paul Gaultier and arguably his most famous client, Madonna, appeared multiple times, as did umbrella hats, top handle totes with gold lacquer faces, giant oversized puffer coats, and belts made of large gold ears, adorned with large pearl earrings. The whole thing was, as you may have guessed, a rollicking good time—fashion at its most irreverent and unselfconscious. It’s no wonder that Roseberry’s tenure is such a screaming success already (he is set to open a New York City store at Bergdorf’s later this month), he’s a living embodiment of one of Elsa Schiaparelli’s most famous idioms: In difficult times, fashion is always outrageous.