Location: Italian Embassy, London
Joanne Black style: Azzaro dress and bracelets, Prada fox shrug and black Stephen Webster diamonds earrings
Every fashionista needs a great tailor. The guaranteed fit – with the cut and colour suited to your body shape – not to mention the attention to detail, means this superb craft should be seen as a necessity rather than one of life’s optional and indulgent extras.
As far as tailoring is concerned, the Rubinacci brand is one of the best in the business. So spending the evening at the launch of Nick Foulkes’ brand new book on the subject was pretty exciting. Of course, tucking into fabulous food at the Italian Embassy – alongside the Italian Ambassador who hosted the night – played a part in making the evening memorable. But when you are in a room surrounded by tailoring heavyweights such as Luca Rubinacci who now runs the business alongside his sister Chiara and father Mariano, you can’t help but smile. For a brand that started life in 1932 with Gennaro Rubinacci at London House in Naples, it’s still going strong – as the thriving shops in London, Milan, Naples, Rome, New York and Tokyo would suggest. (www.marianorubinacci.com.).
The velvet-themed night brought with it some fantastic outfits – and great guests including Lord Mandelson and Lord Jacob Rothschild. Rubinacci fan Bryan Ferry looked fantastic in a blue velvet tux, but it was Nick Foulkes who stole the show, wearing a burgundy velvet tux – with a black waistcoat to break up the colour. Contessa Reina Spencer looked very flamboyant in a blue and velvet dress, which complemented her porcelain skin; Valentina Ferraz-Falk (Luca’s girlfriend) wore a stunning full-length black and white gown and Chiara showed her true Rubinacci colours, wearing a short, black jewel-encrusted flapper-style dress, which she accessorised with lace gloves. Barbara Rubinacci was also in fabulous form, dressed in blue satin trousers and a matching top from her Naples shop, Rubinacci Maison (www.marianorubinacci.com.).
It’s not every night you get to celebrate such a beautiful craft and raise a glass to Rubinacci’s influential work. But with the Rubinacci book now sitting in pride of place on my bookshelf I shall be raising a glass to Italy’s love of fantastic cuts and superb tailoring on many more occasions.