HAUTE COUTURE SPRING SUMMER 2015
Couture week, my favourite time of the year. AW14’s shows last year were spectacular and Couture ss15 continued the fantasy. Whilst last year my personal favourites were Versace’s deconstructive gowns, paired with those infamous thigh-high slits, Zuhair Murad’s cinched waisted monochrome and embellished cape gowns (lets not forget the sequined cutout pant suit. Plus Stephane Rolland’s dark romantic sculptural pieces. Margiela’s tailored pants paired with jacquard jackets to strapless beaded patchwork dresses.
At Haute Couture SS15, florals were a running theme, as were appliqué butterflies. Pieces were floor-length and often full-skirted with nude, peach and lilac hues (not really a surprise) But tuxedos had a moment in many silhouettes- Alexandre Vauthier-lapel tuxedos, Armani Prive, Schiapparelli, Jean Paul Gaultier to Giambattista Vialli’s cropped jacket.
Here are my favourite shows of SS15:
You can always rely on his runways to whisk you into a whimsical romance of a modern day princess. Pure fairytale. The Lebanese designer dedicated the collection to his past with his mother's tulips providing inspiration. The usual soft palettes at the beginning were finished with striking black pieces towards the finale. Floor-grazing, semi-sheer gowns decorated in sequins, feathers. But there was a twist brought to the runway that saw above-the-knee party frocks trimmed in feathers, the gowns also had a new dimension of pockets. I loved the relaxed tulle jumpsuit and robe with ostich plumes. Very unexpected.
Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli’s collection for Maison Valentino was inspired by love and the painter's Marc Chagall’s Russian heritage and the works of Shakespeare. The highlights for me were the looks that were striking in simplicity. The models looked heavenly... the hand-painted bustier dresses- folksy pinafores, embroidered gilets and peasant blouses, whilst materials were rough muslins, velvets and linens.
Soft shaded pieces of aqua green and nude chiffons with intricate floral detailing, paired with velvet red and gold linens.The hair and make up was graciously understated: loose plaited updos. I much preferred the beginning in comparison to the gold lame brash looks towards the end, it felt like a different show.
A consistent favourite for me-Zuhair Murad never lets me down. His distinct eveningwear ploughed down the runway. It was an aquatic show with a watery palette emblazoned with sparkling crystals and shimmering crystals. Full of frothy mousselines, chiffons and tulles, and appliqued flower embroidery. Some garments were more rigid–white wafting cape dresses with structured shoulders. Whilst it descended into more fluid silhouettes in candy hues. Sounds samey samey, but there was a swimsuit with a crystal-encrusted bodice and a knee skimming midi dress. Whilst I bet the playful 50s and the plunging neckline looks were the highlights for some. I adored the tulle Victoriana neckline gown, the blue appliqued bridal piece on a backdrop of nude chiffon. Plus the bronze waterfall lace cape dipped in beading, which is bound to be seen on the red carpet in the next few weeks.
Pure, controlled, graceful – is how I would describe Rolland's presentation. Pieces were elegantly constructed with hemlines rigid but somehow easily fluid. Fit flare silhouettes, a ruffled and fringed fishtailed gown. The palette focused on black and white, and a few hints of nudes, metallics, mochas/terracottas. So many different looks but it all worked together. The voluminous toffee ruffled silk dress, the billowing kaftans and crisp white jumpsuit. Curvy gold leathers and latex were paired with transparent chiffon and tulle pieces. Crepes and tulle were used so perfectly-everything felt so light. Rolland sent out three sheer gigantic crinolines numbers for his last looks- check out the nude bodiced ruched piece toppled with black appliqued leaves.
Dolce & Gabbana
A decedent presentation that combined both beauty, dance, opera, and couture in Milan.As to be expected. The dresses were dramatic and theatrical yet fun. It was absolutely breathtaking with gowns decorated with flounces of chiffon and tea-stained lace, parchment beige posters and baroque embroidery, the blood red fishtail with nude underlays was magical.
Ralph & Russo
It’s exciting times for Tamara Ralph and Michael Russo, the first UK label to feature at Couture Week and its first retail boutique, inside Harrods. A collection of embroidered pale pastels and floral sculpted Fifties party dresses, tailed fit flared dresses and ankle grazing appliqued cape pieces. There were crystals, pearls, sequins combined with, apple green, violets and lilac, whites and nudes. All crafted beautifully on demure, retro shapes with multiple peplums. A touch of Dior, and Old Hollywood came to mind—sculpted tulle, with long and short capes thrown over long beaded gowns. The five last looks were standouts=marshmallowy frills and volumes on every section of garment.