Fashion Week

The Highlights of Couture Spring 2019

From Margiela's multicolored runway extra-extravaganza to Valentino's inclusive cast of models and jaw-dropping designs, our favorite moments from PFW.
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Someone Was Missing at Chanel

Karl Lagerfeld was a no-show at the Chanel presentation, due to tiredness. Nonetheless, in his absence, the show brought tropical vacation vibes to a snowy Grand Palais. The models strutted around a pool and through palm trees, in clothes not too different from any previous Chanel show. However, one look truly did turn heads; the closing number, a bridal bathing suit covered in silver, sparkly embellishments topped with a swim cap and cathedral length veil proved that the idea of a gown being the only option for brides is long gone! We’re ready to get hitched in the Maldives with this number, it’s too bad Karl wasn’t there to see it in action.

Tears Were Shed at Valentino

The Valentino show was iconic, to say the least. The casting was impeccable; with over 40 non-white models, it was the most diverse casting the fashion house has ever had. In addition, the gowns and playsuits varied from feminine lace and florals to sophisticated prints and tulle, and we can’t forget about the playful pastels and shorter silhouettes. To add to the iconography of the show, Naomi Campbell returned to the runway and walked for the Italian house for the first time in fourteen years, and Céline Dion was seen crying in the front row.

Iris Van Herpen and Her Optical Illusions

The Dutch designer’s collection was inspired by celestial cartography and astrological chimera, and this is made apparent mainly by the movement of dresses. Resembling butterflies, topographic maps, and sea creatures, the dresses made their way down the runway, flowing and bouncing, and took viewers to the future. In a fabulous blend of fashion, science, and art, the show left spectators in awe of how clothes could move in such a way. Many of the looks were completed with 3D-printed accessories and metallic face jewelry.

Givenchy Got Technical

Clare Waight Keller blew it out of the park with this couture collection. Layering latex and lace (all things naughty and nice,) each garment focused on form and precision. The silhouettes felt expertly tailored and well executed, and the designer’s couture take on the backpack was something else. By 2020 we’ll all be carrying bow-packs too big to fit through the door. Lastly, Pat McGrath killed it with the makeup for this show, a personal favorite being the half-glitter faces.

Viktor and Rolf Make a Statement

Viktor Horsting and Rolf Snoeren got the internet talking after unveiling their spring summer 2019 collection. Oversized cupcake-like tulle gowns floated down the catwalk adorned with cutout phrases such as “I’m not shy I just don’t like you” and “I want a better world.” The designers have stated that the strange juxtaposition of the period dresses and modern one-liners is inspired by the banality of social media, which is ironic because their collection has turned into a viral meme.

Erin O'Connor Walked Schiaparelli Pregnant

Taffeta, whimsy, and stars, oh my! The Schiaparelli show was sensational. With astrological prints, botanical designs and cowboy boots, the entire collection felt very current. Inspired by astronomy, astrology, and flowers, the things that inspired Elsa Schiaparelli as a young girl, each look sent down the runway felt quite theatrical and whimsical, but most importantly wearable. Under the direction of Bertrand Guyon, along with the help of styling by Katie Grand, Schiaparelli seems to be revived! Our highlight from the show? Erin O’Connor closing the presentation in a tiered tulle gown so grand it completely concealed her baby bump.

Wild Decadence at Margiela

To sum up Galliano’s spring ‘19 Margiela collection in one word: discombobulating. Two words? Discombobulating and chic. Genderfluid ensembles and long tube dresses that restricted all arm movement made their way down the mirrored runway in shades of Yves Klein blue and repeated kaleidoscopic prints. In classic Margiela fashion, many pieces felt deconstructed and reconstructed. More neutral looks also made an appearance in the collection: tight trousers and tailored blazers, paired with timeless doll shoes in patent leather solids and graphic prints. It was often difficult to separate the models from the venue’s chaotic backdrop featuring graffiti and poodles, along with the fragmented repetition of the models in the mirrored floor, but the focus remained on the intricacy of each garment.

Armani Did Not Disappoint

Deeply rooted in art deco, the Armani Privé collection did not let us down. Slender silhouetted dresses in shades of red and blue mimicking polished lacquer took their time coming down the runway to the score of Bernardo Bertolucci’s The Conformist from 1970, allowing spectators the opportunity to really digest each piece. There was something quite cinematic about the collection, and it can’t be chopped up to the music being played at the presentation. The looks ranged from sculpted silver suits to floor length column dresses in materials such as high shine leather, sequins, and snakeskin. The show ended with black sequin sets that felt like liquid and an all-white bridal look. To cap off the cinematic experience of the show, actresses such as Uma Thurman, Dakota Fanning, and Juliette Binoche were seated in the audience.

Van Der Kemp Goes Eco-Conscious

RVDK gave used fabrics a second chance at life in this couture presentation, leaving his collection with no overall theme. Considered demi-couture, the designer sourced fabrics for his collection from all over; the closing sale of a French mill, fabric destined to be turned into a lampshade, even leftover yarn scraps from a factory in India. Only able to receive 10-20 meters of each fabric itself, each garment played into haute couture culture, being the most limited edition. With couture’s strong focus in exclusivity, this emphasized the uniqueness of each piece and helped remind us that sustainability is tres chic!

Anna Cleveland Walked Gaultier

This collection felt…nautical. Navy blazers and blue and white stripes, JPG stuck with his signature motifs for this spring collection, yet what could have felt redundant and familiar became refreshing as spectators set sail on a journey around the world. Gaultier approached the theme loosely serving looks that included extreme peaked shoulders, and dresses that resembled jellyfish. Our highlight from the show? Anna Cleveland (daughter of the iconic Pat Cleveland) concluding the collection in a caged bridal look that appeared to be made out of paper among other various materials.

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