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Valentino Couture Spring 2017

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Valentino Couture Spring 2017 Valentino Couture Spring 2017 Valentino Couture Spring 2017 Valentino Couture Spring 2017 Valentino Couture Spring 2017 Valentino Couture Spring 2017 Valentino Couture Spring 2017 Valentino Couture Spring 2017 Valentino Couture Spring 2017 Valentino Couture Spring 2017 Valentino Couture Spring 2017 Valentino Couture Spring 2017Valentino Couture Spring 2017. Images & Source Via WWD

One could argue that this couture season saw two major debuts, the more obvious, that of Dior’s Maria Grazia Chiuri. In a sense, her former partner, Pierpaolo Piccioli, had his own debut, his first solo couture collection for Valentino, since he and Chiuri ascended to the role of joint creative directors after the retirement of the house founder.

“To do couture for a designer is a great opportunity,” Piccioli said during a preview, appearing not at all frazzled on the eve of his third show in three weeks. (He’s shown men’s last week in Paris, and prior to that, pre-fall, in New York.) “For me to create couture, to have the opportunity to work with the atelier, is a dream come true.”

For spring, Piccioli staged another exquisite Valentino Dream sequence. What did surprise: The challenging nature of the collection. These were not easy clothes. Exquisite, yes, but not easy in terms of proportion. Dresses fell free-form to the floor from a high neck or off the shoulders, unfettered by demarcations of waist or hips. Often, subtle trapeze cuts, pleats and vertical ruffles added sly volume to the gentle plissés and chiffons. The overall look was surrealist, otherworldly nightgown; these beauties could have costumed Heaven in a Cocteau film, had he been a minimalist. There were day looks as well, including a round-shouldered cape and a long white coat embroidered discreetly with classical symbols of love and nature, both in sturdy, austere cashmere double-face.

Runway

Dior Couture Spring 2017

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Christian Dior Couture Spring 2017 Christian Dior Couture Spring 2017 Christian Dior Couture Spring 2017 Christian Dior Couture Spring 2017 Christian Dior Couture Spring 2017 Christian Dior Couture Spring 2017 Christian Dior Couture Spring 2017 Christian Dior Couture Spring 2017 Christian Dior Couture Spring 2017 Christian Dior Couture Spring 2017
Dior Couture Spring 2017 – Source & Images Via WWD

As Maria Grazia Chiuri develops her identity at and for the house of Dior, she feels its complexities and pressures, particularly for couture. ‘OK, I want to determine what it means for me to do couture.’ I think it is important to maintain this idea that it’s wearable, because in any case we have the clients. But at the same time, I don’t want to lose the idea of dreaming.”

Lest anyone think Chiuri would ease into that idea of a wearable dream, think again. For her Dior couture debut, she authored an extravagant visual tale, one that drew on the founder’s love of gardens. Chiuri had one installed on the grounds of the Musée Rodin, hers a fairy-tale place, magical, sinister and overgrown with foliage. Arriving guests wended through an outdoor maze, and once inside, around straight and curved seating of the bucolic sort, covered in dense greenery. Centering the garden: an ominously enticing tree, its branches strung with beads, ribbons and tarot regalia.

The dresses, meanwhile, included moody, broody, heroine-lost-in-the-woods gowns and a lovely white ecclesiastical shroud. Mostly, there were exquisitely rendered variations on delicate otherworldliness, laces and tulles gloriously embellished, some worn with fanciful Stephen Jones headgear.

Runway

Gucci Pre-Fall 2017

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Gucci Pre-Fall 2017 Gucci Pre-Fall 2017 Gucci Pre-Fall 2017 Gucci Pre-Fall 2017 Gucci Pre-Fall 2017 Gucci Pre-Fall 2017 Gucci Pre-Fall 2017 Gucci Pre-Fall 2017 Gucci Pre-Fall 2017 Gucci Pre-Fall 2017 Gucci Pre-Fall 2017
Gucci Pre-Fall 2017 Source & Images WWD

Flying carpets, fire-breathing dragons, enigmatic panthers, as well as UFOs and the planet Saturn with rainbow rings. These were only some of the elements Alessandro Michele employed for pre-fall to narrate another fairy-tale. To this end, his very personal language wove charming plots across different worlds, ages and cultures. It was a fragmented composition, totally emotional and asynchronous.

A rule-breaker, Michele stole opulent evening dresses, including a stunning taffeta style with flocked ribbons, from the wardrobe of an imaginative Marie Antoinette and juxtaposed it in the lineup with a range of tracksuit-inspired leggings and sweatshirts infused with a vintage feel. Sophisticated shirtdresses in a patchwork of Sixties-style patterns found a place next to a knitted cape with embroidered bunnies, which echoed more surreal, psychedelic atmospheres than reassuring children’s books’ illustrations. He matched the American preppy look with Bohemian references: college blazers, sometimes cinched at the waist with fanny packs embellished with a metallic Gucci logo, were layered over ruffled maxidresses.

Shop the collection at Gucci.com

Runway

Chanel Havana Ball

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Chanel Resort 2017 in Havana, Cuba Chanel Resort 2017 in Havana, Cuba Chanel Resort 2017 in Havana, Cuba Chanel Resort 2017 in Havana, Cuba Chanel Resort 2017 in Havana, Cuba Chanel Resort 2017 in Havana, Cuba Chanel Resort 2017 in Havana, Cuba Chanel Resort 2017 in Havana, Cuba Chanel Resort 2017 in Havana, Cuba Chanel Resort 2017 in Havana, Cuba Chanel Resort 2017 in Havana, Cuba
Chanel Resort 2017 in Havana, Cuba.
Source & Images Via WWD.com

“I won contests,” Lagerfeld said Monday as he put the finishing touches on Chanel’s cruise collection, which he dubbed “Coco Cuba” and paraded Tuesday night on El Paseo del Prado, a handsome tree-lined boulevard framed by four statues of lions, a symbol of Chanel.

The collection riffed lightly on Cuban-isms: The neat vertical pleats of guayaberas — typical men’s shirts — were incorporated into Chanel jackets; beach-y colors and slogans were splashed across nubby tweeds and souvenir T-shirts, and the vivid paint jobs on bulbous Fifties cars were echoed on sequined dresses. One of the latter, in teal, hugged the curves of Lindsey Wixson — a wiz at sashaying down a runway — like a fender does a tire on a vintage Chevy.

Lagerfeld’s affection was also plain on the runway. Forgetting a few feathery mambo sleeves that had a whiff of Tropicana, he etched the Latin theme lightly and blended it with Parisian chic. There was a host of long and frothy dresses with full skirts, gleaming cha-cha numbers, a surfeit of great knits and lots of crafty touches, including fringing and loose, macramé weaves.

“The collection is an idea of a chic and modern Cuba,” he said. “It’s easy pieces.”

Accessories included jaunty straw Panamas and sparkly black berets, which could be seen as a wink to the French capital – or Che Guevara, a major figure of the Cuban Revolution in the Fifties.

Runway

Chanel RTW Fall 2016

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Chanel RTW Fall 2016 Chanel RTW Fall 2016 Chanel RTW Fall 2016 Chanel RTW Fall 2016 Chanel RTW Fall 2016 Chanel RTW Fall 2016 Chanel RTW Fall 2016 Chanel RTW Fall 2016 Chanel RTW Fall 2016 Chanel RTW Fall 2016 Chanel RTW Fall 2016
Chanel RTW Fall 2016 Source & Images Via WWD

“The pearls are too modest.” Lagerfeld’s deft manipulation of the house codes — “things like this” — to suit his mood du jour is nothing short of remarkable. For fall, he worked a particular alchemy, amping up the signature regalia — pearls, boaters, camellias in the interests of chic modernity.

There were suits galore, the dominant silhouette lean and to the knee, with skirts zipped up the sides, or unzipped to reveal contrasting tweed linings. These came in countless variations, and looked newest in vibrant pinks and berries. A sportswear attitude surfaced in sweaters decorated with grommets over metallic skirts, and a shrunken jean jacket over camellia-print pants. As for practicality, Chanel trenchcoat, anyone? And, yes, Choupette, her portrait turned into the stuff of skirts and big, functional totes. For the ingenue with a party to go to, Lagerfeld offered angelic white tiers in short and long versions over black tights. And there were the extras — hats held in place with chinstraps fastened with big jewelry buckles; long, thick knitted gloves; emoji pins; iPhone breast pockets, and those pearls galore — all piled on in glorious excess.

Done as it was, it radiated tony practicality and Lagerfeld-style, so much so that it brought to mind that “w” concept — wardrobe dressing, but with focus and high style. Asked whether he’d considered that approach, Lagerfeld said, “I’m very down-to-earth.”

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