Fendi Fashion Show @ Trevi Fountain

These are the days of the fashion weeks and it was our duty to stick the nose into the most buzzed events going around.

From July 7th to 10th Dolce&Gabbana made the thing in Naples to commemorate its 30-years-activity with its new A/W collection and the undisputed Italian cinema queen Sophia Loren, but our hawk eye went strictly on another event that will be remembered for ages.

On July 7th, 2016 the grand maison Fendi realised such an unforgettable fashion show at the Trevi Fountain in Rome to celebrate its 90th birthday.

The frame of the massive Trevi Fountain, dream of the La Dolce Vita nostalgics (how many of you pictured themselves as the bombshell Anita Ekberg or Marcello Mastroianni while she was inviting him to join her <<Marcello! Come here>>?!), was the main stage of this memorable catwalk.

A clear plexy glass runway on the top of the water made the forty models look like wading in the fountain like some contemporary ladies of the lake, over the reflections of lights from the shimmering waters. Among the models, Kendall Jenner opened the parade while Bella Hadid led the final brigade of fairytale princesses.

It seems that this year walking on the water is the big thing, isn’t it? Jesus Christ almost 2000 years ago, now Christo and Fendi.

The Collection’s theme is “Legends and Fairytales” and it takes the inspiration from “East of the Sun and West of the Moon” illustrated book, with a pinch of Art Noveau and Victorian taste.

Transparent veils, hand painted dresses, floral motives, embellishment knits, elegant savage furs, otherworldly ankle boots and bags (named “Once Upon A Time”). It may not be your cup of tea but you can’t be indifferent to all this magnificence.

Who influenced the design of those art works is the Danish fairytale illustrator Kay Nielsen. Do you remember “The Little Mermaid”? – of course you do, I can hear you singing “Under the sea” with Sebastian’s tone of voice – Actually Nielsen was the one who painted the colour plates for the book “Fairy Tales” by Hans Christian Andersen in 1924!

By the way, getting back to event, this ain’t the first time that His Royal Majesty Karl Lagerfeld (Fendi’s head designer – since 1965 – and creative director) gives birth to such colossal and surreal Haute Couture shows:


  • In 2007, 88 models walked a 88 mt carpet on the Great Wall of China: the first ever fashion show visible from the Moon. Why all that 8 stuff? Maybe cause even Karl is a little superstitious since, in China, number 8 is considered to be a lucky talisman and sign of prosperity;
  • In 2011, a bridge over the Han river in Seul (South Corea) became the stage of another breathtaking runway branded Fendi.

Anyway, Fendi’s takeover of the Trevi Fountain isn’t just a coincidence since in 2013 the Italy’s most luxe fashion maison founded by Adele Casagrande and Edoardo Fendi, sponsored a 17-months-long renovation and restoration of the Trivium’s streets Fountain – which reopened on November 2015 – by donating 4$ mln with the campaign “Fendi for fountains”.

The Trevi Fountain is a unique place and it represents Fendi preservation of values, tradition and historic patronage while looking towards the future”
Pietro Beccari, Fendi’s chairman and CEO

For this glorious anniversary Fendi decided to tell its story with a dedicated website (https://fendi90years.com/it/), publishing an illustrated book “Fendi Roma” and opening the exhibition “Fendi Roma – The Artisan of Dreams” at Palazzo della Civiltà Italiana (Fendi Headquarters in Rome) until October 29th, 2016 – dedicated to its artisanship’s history.


But now lets go back to the succulent and atrocious part of the Haute Couture event of the year:

  • after being charted with a private Fendi plane – from Paris to Rome – our beloved guests got welcomed with a pre-opening cocktail (I know, I know, they just forgot our invitation on the desk and we don’t need to be emerald with envy)

  • the golden list for the runway show was made of only 200 selected lucky guests – from the fashion world Bernard Arnault (LVMH President and CEO), Franca Sozzani (Editor in chief of Vogue Italia), Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli (Valentino’s Creative Directors), Carine Roitfeld, Hamish Bowles, Dario Franceschini (Italian Minister of Cultural Heritage, Activities and Tourism), movie stars as Gong Li or Kate Hudson and influencers like Chiara Ferragni, Anna Dello Russo, Chriselle Lim or Lottie Moss – all sitting in the front raw parterre enjoying the magic

  • during the show were played film scores from Nino Rota – the all Rossellini’s film composer (oh Lord can you hear the melodies mixing with the swish of the fabrics?)

  • at the end of this open-eyes-fairytale, Karl Lagerfeld and Silvia Venturini Fendi threw three coins into the fountain as a good-luck sign: you can be the masters of fashion but wishes and dreams are what the future is always made of

  • AND, cherry on the top: the after show culminated in an exclusive lavish dinner party at Villa Borghese’s Pincio Terrace for 600 selected guest (and we were all here at the mortals table – barely feeling the scent of all the tasty goodies, champagne and awesomeness).

Now, don’t be sad for your lost invitation, every cloud has a silver lining, so enjoy the official video of the show:

<<Rome makes history, Fendi makes history>>


Alessandra Sciarrino