Snow White made her debut in 1938, and to mark 80 years of the original Disney princess, four legendary designers are celebrating her youth and innocence in some cutting-edge gowns.
The designers — Alberta Ferretti, Naeem Khan, Monique Lhuillier, and Marchesa — drew inspiration from Snow White’s “gothic, Tudor look” to create “one-of-a-kind fairytale gowns for a 21st century Snow White.”
“As a little boy, all the Disney characters were a part of my education,” Khan says in a video about the project. And, as David Pacheco, Disney’s creative director, explains, there’s a lot to learn. For example, in addition to Snow White’s red ruby lips, her eyebrows are thin pencil lines. “In order to keep the character looking young, she wore a little bow in her hair,” he said, adding, “She was very special to Walt Disney. She set the ground rules for all the Disney princesses.”
Don’t assume that these creations are childish — these are anything but. Alberta Ferretti made a gown with a matching star-covered midnight blue cape, with the queen’s castle depicted on the back. Marchesa’s white gown with crystal embellishments and puffy sleeves, recalling the styles of 1938, is perfect for a fairytale wedding. If you’re over her innocence, you’ll be drawn to Monique Lhuillier’s blue beaded gown with a white tulle skirt, which “goes to the dark side of Snow White,” as Pacheco points out in the video. It features a subtle skull in the center of the bodice that, as he describes it, is “reminiscent of the witch preparing the apple.” That infamous red apple sits on the hip of the dress.
The custom dresses aren’t for sale (yet) but will be featured in Saks Fifth Avenue’s iconic New York holiday windows, alongside a 10-story-tall theatrical light show dedicated to Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.
This is the first time in its 94-year history Saks will animate all of its celebrated holiday window displays along Fifth Avenue. Until Jan. 2, the 14 windows will each depict a different scene from the movie. “Vignettes will include Snow White dancing among woodland creatures, the seven dwarfs ‘heigh-ho!’-ing home from a day’s work in the diamond caves, and the Wicked Queen’s mischievous trickery with the infamous red apple,” a press release reveals. A new 3D layering technique is also being introduced that incorporates original artwork from the film into the backdrops for each display.
The store also has more Disney-themed holiday surprises in store — for example, character appearances — if you can tear your eyes away from the window displays.
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