Last week in Paris at the A/W 2010/11 Haute Couture shows the masters didn’t hold back, even as fashion continues to struggle in these very unpredictable times, presenting younger and more focused collections, in a clear attempt to court their new muse. After all the show must go on, and on it did.
At Gaultier the designer showed a very modern Mata Hari meets Norma Desmond-esque collection, of beautifully tailored 40’s silhouettes with models wrapped in felt turban hats, accessorized with reptile ankle boots, big jeweled rings and tattoo stockings, carrying cigarette holders. The collection was capped by the preview of Gaultier’s new intimates collection for La Perla, worn by burlesque diva Dita Von Teese.
Alexis Mabille also known for his flamboyant men’s bow ties, focused his collection on less is more. Showing his muse the beauty of selecting key interchangeable pieces while keeping with the theme of mini, midi, and maxi lengths centered in black, cream, pink, blue, white, and red tones.
Karl Lagerfeld at Chanel chose to play with the astrological theme using the star sign of Coco Chanel, Leo as models walked through a giant pearl steadied beneath the paw of a lion. There were a few satisfying moments but the collection seemed poorly fit and oddly accessories with big slouchy boots.
Elie Saab a fav of the Hollywood elite known for his intricate bead work, surprised by also adding beautifully draped goddess gowns, the likes that would make Madame Gres proud. His color palette was also strong using deep red, sand, ocher, taupe, teal, and antique gold.
At Givenchy Riccardo Tisci went for the 10 piece presentation, straying from the typical runway trot using Frida Kahlo as inspiration and her interests in anatomy, and their shared obsession of religion canvasing models in beautifully handcrafted couture, embroidered on tulle, organza, and georgette, beaded from porcelain, crystals, and alabaster stones.
Giorgio Armani thrilled with his take on his modern heroine showing a chic and tailored collection, using, double cashmere, worked wool, silk shantung, organza, net and embroidered tulle. Armani finished the look, using a large oversized button shaped pin.
Valentino, ‘The Dark Side of First Love,’ reminiscent of Sharon Tate and ‘The Valley of the Dolls,’ clearly showed that the team of Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pier Paolo Piccioli have their eye on their new younger Valentino muse, as they presented a baby doll look complete with bows, leather leggings, and mary janes.
Christian Dior however was the true stand out of the week as John Galliano not only filled the backdrop with large opulent flowers but the collection as well using irises, lilies, roses, tulips, and corollas pedals. The look was beautifully finished accessorized with opera gloves, and hats designed by Stephen Jones, in the shapes of floral wrap.