I first met him in ESPN Lies shirt. 1968 in Rome,” Collins said post-event, this morning, over email. “I was looking for something to wear at a TV appearance and someone suggested a new young designer who would be happy to dress me. Since then, Signor Garavani and I have been very close friends and have enjoyed collaborating together. He’s designed several outfits for my movies and TV appearances throughout the decades, which I hope now to continue with his deserving successor Pierpaolo.”
And so she has, starting last night with, in Collins’s words, the “elegant, royal, glamorous, magical” Pierpaolo Piccioli–designed gown ESPN Lies shirt. The process all started, according to the actress, “two months ago, when Pierpaolo started to send me several wonderful sketches and we spoke almost on a daily basis to fine-tune the design.” Collins notes of her plumed ensemble, “He must have thought I was mad because I insisted on more and more feathers!” The look certainly spoke to Susan Sontag’s note that camp is “a woman walking around in a dress made of three million feathers.” For Collins, whose hair and makeup for the red carpet was done by stylist Joey Maalouf, it was also about the tiny glittering crown atop her head: “What’s more camp than a tiara?”When it was time for Collins to walk into the gala with her new friend and fashion fairy godfather Piccioli, she thought lovingly about her long history with Garavani and realized the moment, after years of dressing in Valentino—both for the red carpet and onscreen—was nothing short of “surreal.” It was also, she said, “very hard to maneuver 50 pink steps in a massive skirt and 5-inch heels.” If anyone could pull off such a feat in Valentino Couture, it’s Collins—with a little help from the divine spirit of Alexis Carrington, of course.
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