A couture is made to give wings to the creation of couturiers, who strip away from any ephemeral fashion trend to fulfill the most unusual desires of their clients. Haute couture consumers, a rare species these days (they number just over 200 worldwide), eagerly await the two collection seasons, which take place in Paris in January and July.
But not everything is a party: the rigidity of an atelier, with centuries-old rules and sewing techniques, perpetuated by the premières d’atelier (studio heads) and petites mains (young apprentices), for months on end, is visible and palpable during a parade.
But to be part of the select official calendar of the French Haute Couture and Fashion Federation, the brand has to respect several conditions: each piece must be made by hand in ateliers of at least twenty people. In addition, the brand has to commit to showing two collections a year, with at least 25 silhouettes each, respecting the standards of two ateliers, the flou (flowing pieces) and the suit (trousers and blazers).
It’s no small feat, but the spectacle is worth it. Scenario, music, casting of models, in addition to the silhouettes themselves, all together help the select audience of journalists, buyers and VIP customers not to skimp on applause and tears.
And so it was no different with the season of Spring/Summer 2022, which started on Monday and ended yesterday in the French capital. In total, 16 maisons paraded their collections, in addition to 12 that opted for digital presentations.
France, which has imposed strict vaccination passport control rules for the public present, is, little by little, returning to the normality of fashion weeks. After two difficult years, with the cancellation of fashion shows and the adoption of digital presentations, the fashion wheel is turning again, to the delight of fashionistas and the market, which celebrates the return of in-person fashion weeks.
The most awaited show of all fashion weeks, whether in couture or prêt-à-porter, Chanel brought us a set in black, white and beige (the house’s symbol colors) imagined by French artist Xavier Veillan, a personal friend of Virginie’s. Viard. A mix of an equestrian route with a garden and mini golf, in addition to a sand walkway and a stage for the singer Sébastien Tellier, the parade also opened with Princess Charlotte Casiraghi riding a horse (and of course, dressed in a black Chanel suit). .
The silhouettes, composed of short suits and long evasés below the waist, also brought skirts with openings that revealed lace and miniskirts, long dresses with feathers, sequins and macramés.
To close with a flourish, a simple tribute to actor Gaspar Ulliel, who died in a skiing accident this month in Grenoble: the bride carried a blue bouquet, the color of Bleu de Chanel perfume, for whom the actor was the face.
As usual, Dior presents its collections at the Musée Rodin. In an Indian vibe, the brand had the collaboration of the artist couple Madhvi et Manu Parekh, who explored their XXL-size works on the walls of the “white box” where the maison’s fashion shows take place.
It was up to the Indian communities of embroiderers to celebrate the work of the artists by embroidering on top of their works, full of faces and shapes in vibrant colors, transforming the room into a giant tapestry gallery. The looks, which also paid homage to the work of the seamstresses in their ateliers (located on the famous Avenue Montaigne, in Paris), came with long, flowing, body-hugging patterns, filled with beads, sequins, lace and mini beads.
“I focused on the language of embroidery, which often has a superficial ornamental dimension. I wanted it to become the raw material, to envelop the body”, said Maria Grazia Chiuri in the parade press release. It was the case of a dress with weaves, gray tulle and braids sewn with beads and pearls, which added up to more than 1,200 hours of work.
The American Daniel Roseberry never ceases to impress the fashion public with his extravagant collections full of surrealist allusions, a legacy of founder Elsa Schiaparelli (1890-1973). This time the chosen location was the Petit Palais, one of the epicenters of Parisian fashion and art.
All made in black, gold and white, the collection brought a large number of black models, which highlighted the strong pieces of the line. Hats with tulle that went to the neckline of tube dresses, bijoux that came out of the gala dresses and floated in space, metal straps that went almost to the ground, the representation of the sun and the planets in dresses and bags, the universe ” Schiap” into delicious madness.
The Italian maison is pure magic, and it has the power to make you cry in every couture season. This time, it was no different. Pierpaolo Piccioli’s mastery of creating the harmony between the look, the choice of model, in addition to the soundtrack, is guaranteed in each collection presented at Place Vendöme, the brand’s Parisian headquarters.
Ample and tighter dresses, sometimes made with straps in the form of ties, wool braids, crepes and silks in the most unusual shades possible (green, purple, orange, pink and red), drew sighs from the small audience of 50 people.
But Piccioli’s inclusive casting was what caught the eye, from veteran models like Violetta Sanchez (Yves Saint Laurent’s muse in the 1980s) and Kristen McMenamy, boys parading couture looks, to the Dutch mannequin Jill Kortleve, with shapes and curves. a size 40, far from the XXS stereotype demanded by the catwalks.
“I wanted to explore the history of the body through the ages. I thought of the Venus de Milo, of Botticelli’s Birth of Venus, but also of Man Ray’s photos or Picasso’s feminine curves. We usually work with our in-house mannequin and all stockmans (busts on which prototypes are made) are custom made. It was a different exercise for the studios to appropriate these new measures”, explains the Roman designer in the press release released at the time, wanting to “celebrate the power of the body”.
Viktor & Rolf
The Dutch maison, corresponding member of the couture week (that’s what foreign brands that participate in the official calendar are called) brought a collection inspired by the classic film noir “Nosferatu”. In the heart of the Palais Chaillot, a sublime Parisian theater, the models showed ghostly looks with structured shoulders that went beyond the height of the shoulders.
A mix of Addams Family with Dracula, costumes, doll-style dresses, Claudine collars, everything went against the Hollywood and vampire makeup of the models, with gray wigs. The duo Viktor & Rolf, as usual, leaving the ordinary and creating a buzz, took the opportunity to exclusively reveal the partnership with the very Brazilian Melissa: black clogs in platform heels decorated with an XXL buckle. A luxury!
Jean Paul-Gaultier by Glenn Martens
Since retiring from couture in 2020, the designer has taken pleasure in inviting other stylists to create couture looks for his brand. This time, Glenn Martens, at the head of Y/Project and Diesel, incorporated his codes into the brand of the enfant terrible of fashion.
On the catwalk, Glenn’s rock spirit was seen in the marinière, Gaultier’s trademark, here unraveled in a nude dress, or in the scraps of fabric that were transformed into immense trains. The corset, another symbol of the maison, appeared in several looks, sometimes ultra-glued to the body, as a return to distant centuries.
Almost psychedelic dyed fabrics, patches, strips, folds, velvets, high collars, a hint of funereal romanticism also appeared on the catwalk, showing that a hint of rebellion can also be couture.
Reference: CNN Brasil