Tatyana Parfionova’s Garden of Earthly Delights
Spring arrived early with a fashion show that brought out the romantic in those lucky enough to attend.
Published: February 12, 2014 (Issue # 1797)
With an unseasonably early thaw in progress, thoughts of spring and summer were on the minds of those gathered at the Winter Garden of the Astoria Hotel on Sunday for the presentation of beloved local fashion designer Tatyana Parfionova’s latest collection. While the temperatures outside may have been hovering near freezing, Parfionova presented an eclectic show titled “I Was Born a Gardener” that included influences of the renaissance and the 19th century in a romantic bouquet that was nonetheless resolutely modern in its attitude. Set to the strains of Okean Elzy’s “Vesna” (Spring) and the sounds of chirping birds and thunderstorms, the runway show transported those to a wonderland of color and imagination.
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The show got underway with a bit of audience participation as various supporters stood to deliver lines of poetry in English, Russian and Italian while a trio of “gardeners” appeared and began passing out bouquets of flowers.
Emerging from between a pair of potted palm trees, the models in their china-doll makeup did their best to blend the glamour of the catwalk with the labor of love that is gardening. Adorned in luxurious jewelry from the house of Boucheron, the clothing layered Parfionova’s signature embroidered motifs on sheer silk tulle over full length skirts.
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Critics are already saying that this is the designer’s best collection yet. Parfionova, who opened her fashion house in 1995 and has shown her collections on the runways of Paris, Milan, New York and Beijing, is one of the few St. Petersburg designers known outside of the country.
Inspired by the approach of Valentine’s Day and the lush romanticism of the collection, The St. Petersburg Times took the opportunity to ask some of those in attendance what they thought were the most romantic spots in St. Petersburg.
“The most romantic place in St. Petersburg is the roof of our residence with a view of the Neva," said Jennes de Mol, General Consul of the Netherlands in St. Petersburg. "It is astonishingly beautiful. You have the sun, and the thrill of a very exciting place, and you are alone — which is important. You also have the most beautiful view of the town. You see the Neva but you also see the courtyards and the roofs — you see another world. You see St. Petersburg from another angle, which is very nice.”
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