Making love and wrapping up – the end of haute couture, at Gaultier, Viktor and Rolf, Valentino and Armani
The couture is over. Long live the couture. Or something. Do we really think couture is going to live forever? Yes, probably. There is enough financial muscle, enough press still clapping (I hope not sporadically), and enough clients to spuriously justify that there are women who demand dresses entirely made out of pieces of ribbon or microscopic feather flowers. And the clothes, at their best, are extraordinary.
Rules are made to be broken. That’s what we’re all taught in our school days. Well, not so much taught, but you pick it up along the way. Raf Simons certainly has. For his autumn/winter 2015 collection, on the first day of Paris’ men’s shows, he once again latched onto youth, his eternal inspiration. Only this season, like the last, felt like it was Simons’ own misbegotten ways. And, in tune with the season as a whole, that necessitated a trip to the archive, and a flick through the garments that defined his aesthetic.
The couture schedule, somehow, was packed this past week. Here are a few words on a few shows for the spring/summer 2014 haute couture week, including Vionnet, Chanel, Valentino and Armani.
Watching the menswear shows online – as I have been doing over these opening four days of the autumn/winter 2014 Paris collections – is very different to observing them in flesh and fabric.
It’s difficult to buy a bag, as a man. Very, very difficult. And it’s not because people aren’t pitching for your cash. Far from it. We featured manbags alongside the glad rags in the men’s fashion special of the Independent Magazine for autumn/winter 2013, because they have grown in visibility and in importance.
Over-thought, overlooked and afterthoughts. A few more from the French spring/summer 2014 collections
Have you ever eaten an eighteen-course French meal and passed out from the exertion? No, me neither. Apparently when they autopsied Louis XIV his stomach was three times the size of an average man. Sometimes it feels a bit like that during Paris fashion week. You feel bloated, stuffed, saturated. It’s with fashion, rather than food. The latter is thin on the ground, bar the ubiquitous croques.
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