Couture Week always brings drama, elegance and luxury and this year was no different. Volume and a mastery of silhouettes as always were key features, designers worked them into their own aesthetics and spun them into modern adaptations.
Schiaparelli’s collection brought modernity, tailoring and power to the traditionally elegant yet surrealist brand. Despite this, my favourite look incorporated all the best parts of the traditional house. The gown pictured above was striking in its mushrooming of ruffles creating an incredible structure. The rich blue colour and the jewelled detailing, so perfectly Schiaparelli with its affinity for intricately luxurious detailing. The jewels incorporated the surrealist touch of traditional Schiaparelli, scattered across the whole look extending past the gown, creating a work of art.
My love for Iris Van Herpen’s creations have been long spouted here at CUB, the designer just never fails to completely amaze me. Every piece she creates is an intricately designed illusion, the longer you look at them the more impressive they get. The look pictured above almost looks like a carcass, yet it’s made elegant and magical due to its intricacy and delicacy. Her work always creates a merge between the human, alien and the natural.
Another designer’s aesthetic I can never grow tired of is Giambattista Valli’s, no matter how many ruffled tulle gowns I see waltzing down the red carpet I will never stop admiring the sheer beauty and craftsmanship of them. Valli makes sure we never grow tired of them, playing with silhouette and volume in his collections. This year he did not hold a runway show for the collection, stating that the quickness and exclusivity of the shows is not something he warms to. The photoshoot that the brand produced instead allows longer viewing of his work, highlighting how magnificent these gowns are and thus placing and thus admirative lens on the work put into them. The quirkily angled photos created an editorial level standard of photoshoot, working to show off the volume of these beautiful ballooning gowns.
Alexandre Vauthier’s collection was elegant with an element of playfulness. He said ‘women’s uniqueness’ is what constantly inspires him, this collection definitely showcased this. It was a mix of extravagant carnival type looks, boyish suits and classic ballgowns. The look above is a favourite for me because it showcases the depth of this mix. It’s a boyish casual yet simultaneously formal suit with its shorts and fitted sculpting jacket, all topped off with a burst of excitement in the huge feathered headdress.
Clare Waight Keller’s inspiration for this Givenchy collection was the garden rooms at Sissinghurst Castle and the romantic letters between Vita Sackville-West and and Virginia Woolf, creating a collection evoking a dreamy summer romance. The volumes of the gowns and headdress were based upon the blooming of flowers. The look above especially highlights this, creating this idea of sweet innocence yet with a classic feel and sensibility due to its monochromatic colours.
For a Spring collection, it’s unusual to be transported to such a magical snowy destination. Yet Guo Pei took us to the Himalayas harking to its spirituality. The Himalayan inspiration is clear in the beautiful detailed embroidery and holy silhouettes. It’s wintery, yet the floral detailing and cutesy short dresses bring it to the spring. It’s fun but simultaneously strong and powerful.