GIAMBATTISTA VALLI’s client does not have a day life, or if she does he has no interest in clothing her for it in couture. He’s quite a pragmatic guy and he’s probably fine with her wearing a T-shirt and J Brand jeans during the day – possibly with one of his Moncler coats – but at night she’s all his.
His show today was womanly and masterful, sticking in general to the shapes that he favours – a shell top, a swollen-bellied skirt, a full length coat to which he added a high embroidered cummerbund-style waist.
Frills were everywhere, often defining the shoulders and sleeves, and motifs from the natural world were there in many of his gowns – a tree of life jacquard, an iridescent rose print, silk embroidered flowers and embroidered corsets of petals.
It appeared to be less aimed at the nightclub-dancing social butterfly he is often associated with, but then they like him have grown up together.
His sugar almond finales have become a kind of tradition in their feminine grandeur and this one didn’t disappoint.
IT was a paper jungle in the round for Karl Lagerfeld’s couture offering, opened by Chanel gardeners with their waterless cans in khaki and a straw version of the hats he had embellished with tulle for the show.
The clothes were light in an extraordinary medley of fabrics that only Chanel is capable of creating – thousand-colour boucle and crystal flowered epaulettes. The block-colour 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 Sam McKnight had given each girl.
You couldn’t help but think Karl had possibly been inspired by Cara Delevingne’s style with the wool beanies flecked with ostrich feathers that looked great with the evening wear. It was an optimistic light show that gave Chanel a youthful vitality without losing its elegance.
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LOUCHE, loose and lounge-y was the mood that underpinned Thakoon’s spring/summer 2015 collection. It was comfortable and casual but exotic and elegant with it – the designer citing bohemia among his inspirations and playing that out to silk robe effect, fringed or punctuated with palms, shoulders slashed to make for more interesting sleeve (or rather non –sleeve) details. Thakoon celebrates 10 years on the New York Fashion Week schedule this year – and this was an understated but nice way to mark it.
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HEDI SLIMANE can certainly draw a crowd. His stellar front row this evening was peppered with a host of musicians – Lenny Kravitz, Lou Doillon, Miles Kane, and Thomas Bangalter and Guy-Manuel de Homem Christo of Daft Punk, Peter Doherty and Carl Barat of The Libertines, in addition to former Yves Saint Laurent muses, Catherine Deneuve and Betty Catroux.
His little black book that serves as the show invitation featured a catalogue of works by Robert Heinecken, the American artist best known for his appropriation of imagery – sometimes pornographic – from magazines and packaging. It’s an area that clearly interests Slimane, remember, last autumn/winter, it was John Baldessari another artist of the same ilk whose images featured on these pages.
There is something of that in Slimane – ok, less of the pornographic, perhaps (but there is no denying his girl has edge) – but the designer certainly has a knack of taking all the good bits of what’s gone before and re-proposing them as new ideas for now.
There were 55 looks here, and every one will be poured over by his coterie of fans. From the opening cherry printed one-shouldered fluttery dress – not entirely romantic when teamed with ‘cheap’ 10-denier tights – to the black leather coat, micro tan suede jacket with popper fastening (and a host of other cropped leather jackets, all updates to his hit fringed numbers that sold like hot cakes – despite the price tag circling a figure of £2500) to the camo army jackets, pinstripe blazers, denim hot pants and star print mini dresses. Girls – and women – will want it all. No, there wasn’t anything that we hadn’t ever seen before but it didn’t matter, because it all felt terrifically right again – yes, even those cheap tights – and isn’t it that that matters?
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