The October 2012 issue is emblazoned with a mantra, "Temptation" across the cover. Flip to the issue's most awe-inspiring fashion editorial, "Holy Flowers" and one is tempted not by springtime - as the floral theme may suggest - but by romance, seduction, mystery.
Floral-centric editorials naturally offer a garden full of floral print clothing and accessories. It never gets old for me (I with a self-proclaimed penchant for petals), but I am always anxious for a new interpretation. "Holy Flowers" incorporates its floral frenzy as props, a point of emphasis to the brooding feminine fashion featured on the pages, a mix of classic girlishness and moody Gothic styles. The focus is distinctly couture: frothy layers of tulle, a feathered Alexander McQueen gown rendered in deep fuchsia, an ornate embellished mask by Maison Martin Margiela.
The excitement here is the floral interpretation. A melancholy romantic tinge meets a darker, almost enigmatic exploration of the notoriously effeminate theme. The images draw you in; they come alive from the page.
The most ingenious of fashion editorials let the eye travel across a planned route. Multicolored petals flung at brocade Dolce & Gabbana garments carry one's vision to the fashion, up to model Zuzanna's impassioned expression. Clad in Marc Jacobs, she lies on a blanket in bloom across the bottom of the spread. And a spiral of flowers carries us into the floating chaos of a lilac Oscar de la Renta confection.
"Holy Flowers" sets the example for the innovative creativity that fashion editorials should aspire to. It's a glorious spread, and it has cemented a top spot in my list of favorite fashion editorials of all time.
Photography: Pierre Debusschere
Styling: Robbie Spencer
Florals: Mark Colle
Model: Zuzanna Bijoch
Images via eclectic-society.com