Delfina Delettrez Fendi Is on a Roman Not-Holiday

“Rome can inspire you in many ways,” says Delfina Delettrez Fendi of her hometown. Not surprisingly, the Eternal City, past and present, served as the muse for her fall/winter 2012 jewelry collection, the 10th she’s created in her successful young career. Set in a salon in the Louvre (she has two pieces of jewelry in Le Musee des Arts Décoratifs) Thursday’s presentation featured a family of life-sized harlequin-painted mannequins (some of which, Delettrez tells us, lived in her home quite some time) donning the designer’s baubles. Her inspiration is apparent in cuffs adorned with pearls and marble Corinthian pillars, rough-cut mosaic necklaces, ornate mirrored accoutrements and intricate, geometric marble, gold and silver rings she describes as “mini architecture.”

Surrealism, a theme that has reigned in many of Delettrez’s past collections, appears again in the form of finger earrings, the nails of which are coated in diamonds and eye motifs. “I’m very attached to surrealism. I always have to wear an eye on me,” she says, holding up her diamond eye ring. “It protects me and symbolically, it means a lot.”

The was also decked in pieces from her new collection, like a retractable silver latticework choker and a pair of matching cuffs. “It’s a practical collection. The bracelet can become a necklace or you can scrunch it up and put it in your bag. It’s anti stress,” she laughs. For the avant-garde girl on the go, there are functional pieces, like a mirrored lipstick case that can transform into a ring. And of course, bees and insects, which have become a signature for the designer, are seemingly trapped in the resin beads of necklaces.

In addition to the debut of her fall collection, Delettrez has worked with Humberto Leon and Carol Lim to design the jewelry for their upcoming Kenzo show, which will take to the runway on Sunday. She smiles and clasps her hands like an impatient little girl, looking as though she might explode. “I’m so excited! I can’t wait to see it in on the runway!” Needless to say, the feeling is mutual.