A Symphony of Love & Legacy: Paolo Sebastian Launches 2024 Spring/Summer Couture Collection in Honour of His Grandmother

In a world where fashion often speaks louder than words, Paolo Sebastian’s latest couture collection, Allora Domenica..., whispers a tale of undying love, cherished memories, and timeless elegance.

Inspired by the enduring spirit of his beloved Nonna Domenica, Creative Director and Designer Paul Vasileff weaves a narrative that transcends mere fabric and thread, capturing the essence of a bygone era and the indomitable woman who shaped it.

Photo by Stacey McLean

At the heart of this collection lies a deeply personal tribute to Nonna Domenica, whose influence permeates every stitch and seam. Drawing from the rich tapestry of the old-world charm of Italy where Nonna Domenica’s dreams took root, Vasileff conjures images of sun-drenched afternoons and whispered secrets of innocence lost and insightful wisdom gained.

“Domenica dreamed of being a teacher, and in the end, she was my very first,” reflects Vasileff. “She taught me to sew when I was just three years old. Not only did she encourage me to create, play and learn, but there was an unspoken language in our family to always pursue our dreams.”

Photo by Stacey McLean

Allora Domenica… breathes life into the nostalgia of yesteryears, with a palette reminiscent of gelato-hued sunsets and fragrant citrus fruits. From the structured waists of iconic 50s silhouettes to the whimsical charm of off-shoulder straps, each piece exudes a sense of timeless allure, reimagined for the modern sophisticate.

“I have this vivid memory as a child of a ceramic flower vase in my Nonna’s house and being deeply fascinated by all its wonderful, vibrant colours” shares Vasileff. “It was a full-circle moment to be able to bring that memory to life in this collection.”

Photo by Stacey McLean

As models grace the runway in ethereal gowns adorned with delicate floral embroidery and intricate crystal work, where Nonna Domenica’s spirit and presence were certainly felt in every exquisite detail. Each piece is a testament to her enduring legacy of grace and beauty, from the whimsical drop waist gown to the regal bell-shaped ballgown.

Photo by Stacey McLean

The Allora Domenica… sixteen-piece collection is a celebration of family, heritage, and the bonds that transcend beyond time and space. A standout piece was a veil featuring a hand-stitched quote from one of Domenica’s favourite poems, Rosabella del Molise. With two scarves paying homage to Domenica’s Calabrian roots and her journey to a new home in Australia, Vasileff honours her legacy with the reverence it deserves.

“Nonna Domenica turns 95 this year, and I’m honoured to celebrate her in this way,” states Vasileff. “It was such a treasured experience to reflect on my Nonna at all stages of the process, and the many magnificent facets that make up the woman she is. She truly is the heroine of this collection – my heroine”.

Allora Domenica… serves as a poignant reminder to pause, reflect, and honour the timeless bonds that connect us all. Through the artistry of Paolo Sebastian, Nonna Domenica’s legacy lives on as a beacon of love and light in an ever-changing world, standing as a poignant moment within this year’s couture landscape.

Photo by Stacey McLean


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