Posted on: 11/11/2014

Gisele Bundchen wowed at Brazil Fashion Week

Despite its sputtering economy, Brazil continues to be a prized target market for fashion brands, as witnessed during the Sao Paulo fashion week"s fall-winter 2015 shows that wrapped up Friday. Several dozen of Brazil"s best-known brands fielded winter 2015 collections at Sao Paulo fashion week, a 5-day extravaganza that has emerged as Latin America"s premier fashion event. Brazil used to hold competing fashion weeks in both Sao Paulo and its beachside neighbor Rio de Janeiro, but starting this season the fall-winter shows in Rio have been scrapped. Some Rio labels migrated to Sao Paulo, while others will continue to show in Rio, but only for the spring-summer season. Top shows in Sao Paulo this week included the collection of modified trench coats at the sporty, Rio-based label Osklen, one of the few Brazilian brands with stores abroad. Another Rio-based veteran, Patricia Vieira served up easy, breezy garments, all made from her trademark material, leather, and some laser-cut so finely that the swingy cocktail dresses appeared to be made of lace. GIG Couture delivered sophisticated robe sweaters and knit skirts in clashing prints. Swoon-worthy Art Deco-style Rorschach test prints in egg yolk yellow and others covered in a mosaic of Islamic stars, were piled one on top of another to an elegantly chaotic effect. The presence of Brazil"s best-known export, supermodel Gisele Bundchen, who walked at the Colcci show Tuesday, wowed the fashion crowd, but perhaps the most electrifying models on the catwalks this week weren"t, strictly speaking, human. The crowd let out a collective sigh when an adorable dog opened the Reinaldo Fraga show Wednesday as part of a publicity stunt by an animal protection organization to promote pet adoptions. And none other than Darth Vader himself nearly sparked collective hysteria when he appeared on the Triton runway to set the mood for the brand"s "Star Wars"-themed collection, flanked by two heavily armed stormtroopers.