Looks inspired by house archives were a common drift among regular couture labels, underscoring a serious dose of femme fatale.
The haute-est week of the fashion calendar did not disappoint this year, and one thing we couldn’t help but notice was the return of classic couture. Looks inspired by house archives were a common drift among regular couture labels, underscoring a serious dose of femme fatale.
See some of the top Fall/Winter 2018 runway shows of Paris Haute Couture Week, including Armani Prive, Christian Dior, Fendi and Givenchy below (swipe left on each gallery for more photos).
As the press notes indicated, Giorgio Armani’s collection was one that was “sculptural, almost regal” – or at least the first half of it. Starting of with a series of mostly monochromatic dresses and pantsuits, the looks delivered as promised: “the authentic essence of luxury and perfection.” Sleek and unfussy yet underlined with the plush feel of silk, velvet and lame, the collection upheld a noble impression of modesty. Then came a sudden burst of turquoise, fuchsia and lots of pink – some overly ostentatious for royalty – before settling into a gorgeous run of champagne gold gowns.
Trust Maria Grazia Chiuri to create the dreamiest of collections that ever so subtly call for attention. Not in an in-your-face kind of way, but in true appreciation of the avant-garde notion of couture and translations of savoir-faire. There were evening dresses painstakingly embroidered with feathers and floral motifs contrasting suits with batwing sleeves and matching veiled hats. A powdery palette of brick, green, pink, orange and every shade of nude painted the collection alongside the house-favourite navy, exuding a soft demeanour that’s made equally assertive by its structural outlines. Another stunning show from Chiuri – and we wouldn’t expect any less in anticipation of the upcoming Christian Dior: Designer of Dreams exhibition at the V&A museum next year.
While Fendi has yet to cease using fur in its designs like Gucci did last year (and many others before), this collection certainly featured more non-fur pieces than previous seasons – a move mirroring the change of its fourrure moniker to couture. But one may not have noticed the difference, for the layers of frayed organza and fringed chiffon were crafted in such a way as to mimic shaved mink. The tromp l’oeil continued throughout with ballerina gowns and opera coats remixed in a swirl of rosettes, lace and hand-painted embroidery; and thermoplastic accessories resembling marble, malachite and mother-of-pearl elements. A beautiful synthesis of art and fashion.
Fresh from designing Meghan Markle’s royal wedding dress, creative director Claire Waight Keller presented a couture collection honouring the legacy of the brand’s founder, Hubert de Givenchy, who passed away earlier in February. Focusing on his partnership with lifelong muse, Audrey Hepburn (whom he dressed for her role in Breakfast at Tiffany’s), Claire explored the house’s archives while maintaining a clear picture of today’s fierce femininity. The resulting looks combined bold shoulders with feather, glitter and sequin embellished dresses; graceful silhouettes with sturdy, metallic accents; and menswear with delicate embroideries.
Images: Courtesy of respective brands