• Text Sara Semic
  • 19th February 2019

The Legacy Of Inheritance

Erdem Moralioglu, whose collections revel in rich narratives rooted in a bygone era, transported us to the resplendent setting of Princess Orietta Doria Pamphilj’s palazzo in 1960s Rome this season. Titled The Legacy Of Inheritance, the collection centred around Moralioglu’s muse, a Roman heiress who had recently returned from London with her adopted son, to take up the ancestral home bestowed on her, and this internal wrangle between the grandeur of her Papal ancestry and the “nipped-in undone glamour” of 1960s London played out in the collection.

Set against the backdrop of the National Portrait Gallery, models sashayed past gilded paintings that echoed the gilt-encrusted interior of Orietta’s palazzo, whilst a dramatic score comprised of a haunting crescendo of violins and the clacking of shoes represented Orietta’s footsteps echoing down the endless corridors, amplifying “the tremendous weight of expectation one must carry in continuing a lineage,” as Moralioglu explained backstage.

Taking the idea of Orietta embodying the palace in order to understand her heritage, Moralioglu was inspired by Italian painters like Fellini, Visconti and Moroni, which informed a crystal-encrusted satin skirt adorned with a painted face. “I loved the idea that she would rip the paintings off the walls and turn them into kilts, and how she used to sew the family jewels onto the inside of her clothes,” Moralioglu said. Silhouettes were voluminous, with cocoon coats and dresses with puffball hems rendered in lustrous jewel-tone velvet jacquards and shimmering floral brocades draping the models. Befeathered dresses were accented with giant black bows and floor-sweeping veiled hats supplied by his milliner friend, Noel Steward, lent a further dramatic air to the collection.