Paris Haute Couture Fashion Week AW 2013: Chanel

Thursday, 4 July 2013

I was looking forward to seeing what Karl Lagerfeld would transform the Grand Palais into this time for the Chanel AW Haute Couture show and of course he pulled off another impressive feat! Inspired by a journey between the old and new world, the designer imagined the border between these two worlds as a theatre in ruins through which one can catch a glimpse of a modern city. The metaphor for  the "old world stepping into the new" is portrayed through the fabrics and designs of the garments. The designer brought together his modernist vision of textile innovation and the best traditional craftsmanship (think of embroiderers, milliners, flower makers and many more). 

The main characteristic of this couture collection are the wide belts and the heavy layering, both regarding different types of fabrics and different lengths. In my opinion, among the most interesting looks are the brownish tweed coats paired with a chocolate brown belt and with a salmon belt, the woven black and white cape suit, the black mini dress paired with a transparent floor-length skirt, some of the metallic dresses and of course the first grey ballerina-inspired metallic look.

Paris Haute Couture Fashion Week AW 2013: Dior

Wednesday, 3 July 2013

The Paris Haute Couture shows are always some of the most intriguing ones during the year, as they give designers the chance to let their imagination run free from the constraints of creating a line for the stores and the come up with unique and more daring pieces and flamboyant references. Innovation is the key element in showing an alternate collection.

Raf Simons's Fall couture collection for Dior was fresh and experimental, albeit very different from the traditional stance of couture. His inspiration for this collection were the different influences that the 4 continents have on Dior. The show goes from tweed tailored suits, a symbol of France, to clean-cut coats and scarves for the Americas, spiky 3D Japanese fabrics or drapes and tribal beading representing the essence of Africa. After seeing such a diverse show, the designer's statement makes perfect sense: "I think it's time to free couture. It annoys me that couture is thought of as the circus clown of fashion. What interests me is to get down to a more psychological level. To think about the individuality, and the cultures women live in.".

Among my favorite pieces were the gray tweed dress, the electric blue dress, the colorful 3D strapless dress, the short gray coat, the draped black dress and of course the colorful gowns towards the end of the show. Here is a selection of the most interesting looks from the runway:

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