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March 20, 2023

Cadence Summers

Paris Fashion Week took the world by storm on January 17, 2023. While household names such as Chanel and Valentino showed gorgeous collections inspired by Coco Chanel’s garden statues and modern club fashion, respectively, it was Daniel Rosenberry’s Inferno collection for Schiaparelli, and its celebrity features, that left the fashion world, and myself, in raptures.

Inspired by the first segment of Dante Alghieri’s “The Divine Comedy”, Inferno, Rosenberry’s Spring Couture 2023 collection debuted thirty-two looks that were nothing short of extraordinary. While Rosenberry, and the maison’s namesake Elsa Schiaparelli, are no strangers to making bold, glamorous designs, this collection pushes their boundaries further by radiating pride, power, and divine feminine energy through revolutionary silhouettes, signature gold bijoux, and, most notably of all, faux-taxidermy animal heads.

Inferno provided Rosenberry with “a perfect metaphor [of creation]…for the torment that every artist or creative person experiences when we sit before the screen or the sketchpad or the dress form, when we have that moment in which we’re shaken by what we don’t know” (AE World). Within this metaphor, however, arose three striking images of “the leopard, the lion, and the she-wolf—representing lust, pride, and avarice, respectively” (AE World). These three pieces in particular, worn by supermodels Shalom Harlow, Irina Shayk, and Naomi Campbell, display Rosenberry’s adoration for the divine femme, and how pride and power are innate animalistic concepts.

Photos by Tom and Lorenzo

While these three show-stopping pieces were the subject of much controversy and global media attention, they were not the pieces that caught my eye. My personal favorites are looks 2, 16, 18, 21, 25, and 26 (shown respectively below).

Photos by Tom and Lorenzo

As a big believer in the power of the little black dress, look 2 captured my attention immediately. While not a traditional LBD, the contrast between the black velvet and pleated eggshell skirt below seems to buttress the corset and bring greater attention to the model’s curves and upper body. The gold buckle adds an element of class and regality, but the simplicity of the silhouette and color palette makes it relatable and desirable. Looks 16 and 26 were truly otherworldly. Rosenberry is quoted as looking to blur the lines between “real and unreal”, and he has most certainly achieved that with these stunning structured busts paired with flowing bottoms. The attention to detail in both is unmatched as look 16 features real mother of pearl in the bust and hand-painted pigments in the velvet skirt to nuance hue and color depending on the angle of view. The gold of 26 combined with copper and green gives the impression of the tree of life with a simple, solid ground and glorious, luminous branches. This bust is quoted to be Rosenberry’s favorite in the collection, and no one is in doubt why. Looks 18, 21, and 25 are the best examples of Rosenberry’s revolutionary take on the feminine silhouette. The minimization of the waist in contrast with the broadening of the shoulders again brings power and pride into the pieces; a metaphor for putting your chest out and holding your head up high. While this dramatization could reinforce ideas of traditional, outdated feminine stereotypes, it actually circumvents this result with the general modesty of the garments and the masculine history behind such concepts as the pinstriped suit and trench coat featured in 21 and 25. 

Daniel Rosenberry’s Spring 2023 Couture collection for Schiaparelli is the most thorough and empowering collection that debuted at the Paris 2023 Fashion Week. His combination of staying true to the maison’s signatures such as anatomy gold bijoux and color palette while adding his own interpretation of Dante’s metaphor for creation results in one of the most beautiful collections I have ever seen. It is clear from his designs that Rosenberry not only knows how to dress women, but how to encapsulate the divine femme, and modernize it to empower feminine pride, power, and strength. 


Works Cited

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