I recently splurged on the Silk Road Kaleidoscope from the Fall collection. I'm glad I ordered when I did, because the week after it was sold out on the Bergdorf Goodman site. Shipping took a little longer than I was expecting, and with each day, I fought off post-buy second guesses. Had I gone insane, getting a 95$ palette, sight unseen? But then it arrived, and I was reassured, entranced and seduced.
If you're unfamiliar with these Kaleidoscope sets (as I largely am) they are put together with the idea that all the shades can be layered together using a technique called couches de couleur. The claim is that they are so finely milled that the colors will blend seamlessly to create a uniquely flattering and luminous shade without ever appearing heavy or caked on. That said, each shade can certainly be worn by itself, and they are no less gorgeous as individuals than they are as a team.
Tapestry - a shimmering, translucent plum.
Though this indeed the sheerest of the four colors, it is far from lacking in pigment. It applies as a medium-toned plum, with a gold shimmer throughout.
This picture doesn't capture how present that gold shimmer actually is, but it comes out more in the swatches.
Worn by itself as a simple wash over the lid, it is stunning.
Damask - a polished brass.
Love, love, love. This is a molten copper shade that applies like a dream, and practically melds with the skin. Although all of these shadows have a superlative texture, this one is the loveliest.
Layered with Tapestry, this transforms into an amazing duochrome-looking shade, like fine, antique velvet.
Ikat - a silk-matte pinot noir.
I don't think wither the description nor the picture here do this justice. Far from being a flat matte, this is a satin-finish burgundy, infused with an incredibly fine wine-colored shimmer.
The texture is just as buttery as Damask's.
It's not an uncommon color, but the execution here is just perfect. This is a great crease shade, especially for warming up a smokey eye.
Brocade - a deep chocolate with sequined copper effervescence.
That description is spot on. A beautiful medium to dark brown with full-throated shimmer. This is not a retiring or safe brown. This brown wants to be noticed and appreciated for the gorgeous creature it is.
The texture here is just a tiny bit drier than that of the other three, but you would really have to be looking for differences to notice.
Layered in the couches manner, Brocade, Ikat, Damask, Tapestry.
Availability: This particular set is sold out, and Kaleidoscopes are limited edition items. However new ones appear to be released seasonally. The line is carried at high-end US department stores like Bergdorf Goodman, Nordstrom, Neiman Marcus. I don't know of any current Canadian retail locations, but most of these department stores will ship to Canada. Price is 95$ USD.
Pros: Ya. I can't say enough good things about this set. All the colors are beautiful and wearable, pigmented, creamy-smooth, a dream to apply and blend. They can be worn singly, in any classic combination, as a plum-bronze smokey, or layered together in the couches technique.
Cons: I can't think of any, other than the relative difficulty in acquiring it. Also the price is nothing to sneeze at.
(I purchased this set from the Bergdorf Goodman website.)