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khaleej times Friday, February 5, 2010



Elie Saab Givenchy


The Haute Happenings Of Couture spring 2010

Stephanie Rivers


ne could not help but think of the box office phenomenon Avatar and its effect, like its predecessor Star Wars, on this design season and future generations, design or otherwise, when seeing the blue faces, the sculpted braided hair, the movie’s colour palette, ecology theme and 3D-inspired designs parading down many designer runways.

Stephane Rollan

JEAN PAUL GAULTIER: Jean paul gaultier gave a mix of Avatar’s na’vi, aztecs and tropical ecology along with his signature touch of masculinity/femininity, created for a woman that was more show girl meets Carmen Miranda than a lady who lunches. There were bustier corsets, silver jacquard denim, park avenue-inspired skirt suits, shawl skirts with fringe, braided-sleeve dresses, gauchos, Mexican sombreros, palm leaf hats worthy of napoleon. The show was exquisite tailoring tempered with showmanship that was classic gaultier. The tuxedo suit with white pleats fanning out from its tail was simply perfection, as were the beribboned platform booties. With the cigars and floral hats and Mexican aesthetic, all that was missing was salt, a lime and patron. GIVENCHY: Riccardo Tisci for givenchy was in a chic 1970s parisian state of mind for this couture outing. There were literal references to the late Yves saint Laurent, with the slicked hair, pale faces, smoky eyes and red lips. purpose-

ful or not, the restrained sensual charged effect could not be missed. The opening look: the perfectly tailored pantsuits with ostrich feathers spilling from its front, which was a play on masculinity/femininity (very YsL), set the theme of what was to come: fabulous tailoring, hip combinations for the true laissez faire. The pairing of a jacket with tails over a feathered T-shirt, gave new meaning to modern power dressing; jumpsuits in lace with bolero jackets (a building trend); organza cocktail dresses; and long evening dresses with layered degrade bottoms of lace (Chantilly perhaps) that were more flamenco than ballroom but beautiful all the same. GIORGIO ARMANI PRIVE: The moon, a space Odyssey and escapism seemed to be the inspiration for armani for this prive outing. The lunar references inferred in the luminescent fabrics; the curvilinear forms hinting at the moon’s craters; crescent shaped embellishments on jackets; and, of course, the space-age milky white ‘over the moon’ (pardon the pun) organza confection layered over a strapless dress. There were wonderful jackets; smart pants suits and ladylike day suits; structured tops paired with skinny pants; signature armani cocktail dresses with deep V-necklines; and strapless floor-length columns that were made for an outing at the Met. CHRISTIAN DIOR: Top hats, veils, equestriennes jackets and riding crops and the romanticism of the original couturier, Charles James, fuelled the imagination of John galliano for this Dior couture collection, sometimes to the brink of overload. There were nip-waist jackets à la riding


jackets paired with full riding-inspired skirts; long sleeved plaid riding dresses resplendent in their modern incarnation of the early 1900s originals; cream lace dresses with ruched necklines, front pleating, side pleating that resembled a bustle; wonderful lace jackets worn with tiered silk skirts; and a covetable hidden platform rear bow satin D’orsay-inspired pump in a lovely raspberry colour. CHANEL: Rococo silver booties and Lady gaga meets Hara juku girls hair, intertwined with romanticism (another trend of the season) made for an elegant, the-future-is-now outing. Karl Lagerfeld is always ahead of the curve and the silver heels with the Chanel jackets, the short suits and the mille-feuille chiffon with raw edging were a modern testament to that. add in the silver shimmer tights; the finger-less gloves that seemed part armour part driving glove; and the pastel colour palette sans any gold and viola! icy perfection. VALENTINO: The na’vi garden of eden and wood nymphs were seen on the Valentino runway with blue streaked faces and body parts, the barelythere chiffon that was moulded as though floating on air, the Rodarte influences in the tribal futuristic styling; youthful georgette fabrics and shorter hemlines. Tradition was still apparent, albeit lightly, with the patchwork jackets and the sculpted floral-imbued sheer floor length dress. This was a very different Valentino from garavani’s Valentino but perhaps this is the direction the house needs to attract new clientele and hopefully not alienate the loyal established customer.

Christian Dior

Jean Paul Gaultier


Weekly fashion column

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