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July 17, 2002
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Rome’s haute couture fashion shows came to a close on Wednesday with a stunning display set against the dramatic backdrop of the Italian capital’s famed Spanish Steps. 

Some of the top names in modelling, including Laetitia Casta. Naomi Campbell, Eva Herzigova and Adriana Karembeu, took to the runway in the event, entitled Donna Sotto le Stelle or “Women Under The Stars”. Also putting in a dramatic appearance was statuesque Jamaican-born vocalist Grace Jones, who strode out in a shaggy fake fur number topped with a catherine-wheel style creation by top Irish milliner Philip Treacy. 

Meanwhile, international Italian soccer referee Pierluigi Collina cast aside his more familiar on-pitch strip for a smart suit by Italian designer Laura Biagiotti. Rome, which has been overshadowed by the rise of Milan as the country’s fashion capital, has been working fiercely to revitalise its place on the fashionistas' itinerary and succeeded in attracting a high number of designers this year. In all, 20 fashion houses showed their autumn-winter collections at the gala.

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Photo: ©
The annual fashion gala - this year entitled Women Under The Stars -is traditionally staged against the dramatic backdrop of the Spanish Steps in front of Rome's Trinita de Monti church Photo: © PA
Photo: ©
American pop diva Grace Jones cut a dramatic figure in a shaggy haired coat topped with a catherine-wheel-style hat by Irish milliner Philip Treacy Photo: © PA

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