For those of you who didn’t know, Paris Fashion Week was in full swing last week. The shows were impressive and designers continued to push the envelope for the next big thing. Haute couture is my absolute favorite part of the fashion world, so whenever designers have a new collection out, I couldn’t be happier. January 23 was the official last day for fashion shows, and it did not disappoint with the featured couture collection. Here’s a look back at a big week in fashion:
Since there are so many designers that presented their collections, I am going to limit the list to my ultimate favorites. I am not a lover of avant-garde fashions. However, if I had to pick my favorites, they would be: Viktor & Rolf and Jean Paul Gaultier. The designs of Viktor & Rolf are not only extravagant, but the creativity involved is brilliant. Their collection this year was slightly boring to me, but like I said, I do not personally follow their translations when it comes to design versus inspiration. The avant-garde collection that I did absolutely adore was that of Jean Paul Gaultier. He never disappoints. His inspiration is more direct and I, personally, connect with his designs. They are both intricate and elegant to the viewer. His colors pop and bring unity to his looks. The designs are incredibly well-thought-out and unique from mainstream fashions.
Elie Saab ranks number one on my favorite designer list. Even before he started dressing celebrities at the Oscars and gaining recognition, I was following his work. His designs embody elegance, beauty, and have a whimsical design. His spring/summer 2014 collection was based upon the nineteenth-century Dutch artist, Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema, and his painted scenes from the Roman Empire. These scenes usually depicted luxurious marble statues and breathtaking scenes of the Mediterranean Sea. Elie Saab embodied these paintings with his use of pastels – blush pink, hydrangea blue, and lilac. His use of beading and appliqués is extraordinary. He uses them as a design element to further the intricacy of his gowns. Each of his silhouettes is classic, yet the way he embellishes the fabric pushes them far beyond ordinary. This recent collection was incredibly flowy and graceful – even though one of his models did take a spill because her hem was too long (uh-oh). Nevertheless, this did not distract from the beauty and elegance that both model and gown had.
Another collection that I thoroughly enjoyed was that of Zuhair Murad. Although critics argue that he has had better collections, I enjoyed the romanticism that the flowers he focused on this year created. I do agree that a few of the gowns would have looked better without all of the flowers. However, two or three overly extravagant gowns did not completely ruin his collection for me. His use of the gold leaf cinching belts created hourglass figures and made his looks regal. I enjoyed his use of pastels and it truly held together his Parisian ideal of modern femininity. His wedding dress alone had 25,000 sewn floral appliqués to accentuate his mystical garden inspiration. The craftsmanship and tedious process of attaching each of those appliqués only furthers my love of his collection.
Last but not least, Ulyana Sergeenko created an amazing high fashion glamour collection. She was inspired by the romanticism and mystery of the Orient Express. As each look walked down the runway, you got a sense that you were on that train ride. The collection told the story of the trip and the parallel relationship between fashion and design made a smooth transition. Her story mixed menswear and very feminine pieces to create the sense that the heroine, as she puts it, “could be a movie star, but she’s definitely a femme fatale.” It is quite interesting to view this collection because of the variety of silhouettes presented and the different mixtures of ready-to-wear and couture. Each piece appears as a luxurious masterpiece.
Other design houses I highly recommend are Valentino Couture, Giorgio Armani, Chanel, Dior, Alexis Mabille, Alexandre Vauthier, and Georges Hobeika. Although I did not comment on all of them, they have created some of the most stunning gowns. The time alone to make a single gown is extravagant. A pair of Chanel’s sneakers takes a minimum of thirty hours and costs more than 3,000 Euros. This caliber of careful manufacturing is something to be marveled. It is one of the many reasons why Paris Fashion Week is so highly anticipated. The viewers can do nothing less than analyze each design and find joy in all of their elements.
Tags : Apparel, Beauty, Elie Saab, fashion, Fashion Show, Girlzone, Haute couture, Jean Paul Gaultier, Ladies Fashion, Lawrence Alma-Tadema, Paris, Paris Fashion Week, Runway, style, Viktor & Rolf, Women's Fashion, Zuhair Murad