Haute Couture at Paris Fashion Week 2015
After a week of terror, Paris is back to being the fashion capital of the world and the couture! Fashion houses including Christian Dior, Chanel, Versace and Elie Saab showed off timeless designs in forward-looking silhouettes on the catwalk. So far, the spring-summer collections exude a fearless France and Parisian pride at Paris Fashion Week’s Haute Couture shows, which kicked off last Sunday.
This year’s present given from Karl Lagerfeld to fashion lovers all over the world was like a bouquet of flowers. The fashion show that introduced us to Chanel’s fantastic Spring collection for 2015 was filled with gardeners with their water less cans in khaki and ladies with hats and tulle covering their faces from the sun.
The clothes were light in an extraordinary medley of fabrics that only Chanel is capable of creating. The wool suits that opened the show came with A-line skirts and long jackets but were swiftly replaced by the introduction of a new line – narrow and falling from the hip with a thin fabric belt looped through and hanging loose. Rooted in the flat leather boots, this silhouette looked fresh, often paired with midriff-baring tops.
Flowers were everywhere, from the hems and shoulder to the arm warmers of tulle and the hair decorations of transparent plastic hanging from the low plait. You could even see some famous faces in the runway like Kendall Jenner or Kristen Steward on the front row.
The paper buds opened into exotic blooms of pink, red and yellow as ladylike silhouettes strutted past. Karl Lagerfeld’s 73-piece collection boasted bare midriffs, tweed suits, crystal flowers and tulle gardening hats. It was an optimistic light show that gave Chanel a youthful vitality without losing its elegance.
Inspired by the seventies and eighties, Elie Saab talked about this collection as the product of his memories in his hometown Beirut and his life.
The runway was brought to life with the sound of birds, delicate sequins, translucent silks and a ruffle of feathers. Inspired by fauna and flora – lush leaf foliage leading the models out in their gowns, for Saab is the master of them and knows how to bring to life Disney dress dreams.
It wouldn’t be couture without them and he does what he does so very well, this time more feathers than sequins and more swing than sculpt to the gowns – some with petals unfurling as though a butterfly had stopped a moment.
But the most standout pieces were those more contemporary short dresses (as you can see in the picture above) worn with flats – they were fun and playful and still as glamorous as we have come to expect from Saab.
The multilayered designs and storybook sets of other haute couture brands, Donatella Versace’s theme was refreshingly simple, uncomplicated yet daringly sexy. Pillar box red and cobalt blue were the only colors that broke up the black and white palette
Long, form-fitting dresses hugged curves, while transparent cutouts and winding slivers showed legs, shoulders and hipbones. The cuts were plunging and the colors were bold. As always the clothes were molded to the body, sometimes with the curved seams exposed. Short bolero bomber jackets accompanied wide skirts with fishtail hems. Crystals were everywhere from the one-shouldered straps to the over-the-knee boots.
The 59-year-old Italian designer described the spring-summer collection Sunday as being “about cut, and the curves of a woman’s body … when we started the collection, I said I wanted no straight lines at all. Every seam is curved,” according to the Guardian.
The creative director of the house Dior, Raf Simons showed a thoroughly modern couture collection, employing the luxury techniques of the house alongside his own creative aesthetic. Opening with a transparent printed pale green plastic coat over a short dress, he established the mood of the show which was assured and very much his own.
Printed catsuits were paraded by Dior Ziggy Stardusts to “Moonage Daydream” and interspersed with full-skirted ballerina dresses with cutaway tops. Heavy sequinned sleeves and collars were mixed with wool mini dresses.
These A-line shapes were teamed with latex legging boots or ankle variations with Perspex heels, while neat ponytails were hung from steel ovals. Stripes were a constant, from technicolor knits to fragile silk ribbons on voluminous skirts falling from a tight bustier.