One of the most exciting, innovative and awe inspiring times on the fashion calendar is the Haute Couture event in Paris. Only open to specially selected designers, the Haute Couture shows are unlike anything else. Extravagant productions, extreme luxury and avant garde collections fill the runways as the designers are not inhibited by the usual constraints of ready to wear. This year had exceptional offerings and we have selected pieces from some of our favorite shows.
Contemporary luxury meets old world glamour in designer Gilles Mendel's first Haute Couture show in Paris. The French designer has done quite well for himself in New York but this homecoming event certainly made a big splash. Taking influences from both of his homes, the pieces carried a downtown edge that mixed well with extravagant details of the dresses.
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Iris Van Herpen
At this point, I'm not sure there's a more exciting designer in fashion than Iris van Herpen. Year after year, the Dutch designer jumps into the future and creates clothes that are as technologically advanced as they are tasteful. This year's Haute Couture line was no exception. Inspired by the study of cymatics, which is a model vibrational phenomena, different waveforms were definitely front and center. Also included were amazing handblown glass beads and silicon tentacle dresses that HP Lovecraft would adore.
Perhaps the most Brvtalist of the collections is John Galliano for Maison Margiela. After a near career ending scandal a few years ago. the designer has done well for himself keeping quiet and designing solid collections for the iconic French house. As always, his shows carried a militant, almost anti-establishment sensibility and his long standing love for French Revolution themes is evident. We love the oversized proportions and pops of color and great accessories.
We've been kind of re-obsessing over the Elizabethan age recently so we were thrilled to see a well executed collection that was inspired by the controversial Queen. While McQueen and other British designers have mined this look before we didn't mind at all as the Italian take on it was refreshing and managed to stay true to the era while updating the looks to be modern and surprisingly sexy.
We instantly admired Donatella's collection which has less emphasis on traditional Versace embellishment and sexiness and featured a more refined, almost professional look at times. The asymmetrical curves and drapery were exquisitely handled and the color tones perfectly complimented the collection.