When it comes to pushing the boundaries of coolness, few designers can match the artistic prowess of Francesco Risso at Marni. For Marni’s highly-anticipated Paris debut, Risso chose a location steeped in fashion history – Karl Lagerfeld’s former apartment on rue de l’Université. The show featured Risso’s latest whimsical touch – a series of custom-made 10-meter-long inflatable sausages, set against a backdrop of classical quintets and electric guitar melodies echoing through the 18th-century mansion.

Risso’s invitation provided a glimpse into his unconventional creative journey, with a handwritten message reflecting on his early days as a 14-year-old in Pigalle. «A flaneur in the synchysis. Or simply put, a ragpicker,» Risso playfully stretched the boundaries of the English language, mirroring his approach to fashion.

What sets Risso apart is his remarkable ability to blend whimsy, eccentricity, and the avant-garde without crossing into farcical territory. This collection’s focal points were classical checks and tartans, skillfully woven into an array of captivating silhouettes. He transformed wide jackets into mini-capes and reshaped singlets into oversized chess piece-inspired designs.

Risso’s designs exude grandeur without veering into grandiosity, from tent-like trench coats to plaid suits resembling the grace of ballerinas’ tutus.

His creative spectrum extended to taut micro-mesh party dresses and form-fitting striped knits, showcasing the breadth of his design expertise.

The grand finale featured a trio of metallic petal fantasy bird-of-paradise looks, a testament to the meticulous craftsmanship that must have consumed weeks of effort.

With a harmonious color palette that included bitter orange, soft Barbie pink, and metallic blues, combined with the historic backdrop of Lagerfeld’s mansion, Risso’s show achieved unparalleled success.

«Undress the mind, dress the sense,» Risso explained, offering insight into the inspiration behind his masterpiece.

Marni, a jewel in the Italian fashion empire of Renzo Rosso, has unequivocally embraced Risso’s vision. Any initial doubts about usurping Marni’s founder, Consuelo Castiglioni, have dissipated. Today, Marni stands as a testament to Risso’s creative genius.

This show was nothing short of spectacular.

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