The glitz and glamour of couture fashion week took place this month in Paris. The buzz of summer in the city combined with the excitement of fashion week created a delightful season of fantastic fashion moments. From the star-studded Balenciaga show to Olivier Rousteing’s collection for Jean Paul Gaultier, here are our five must-see moments from Couture week. —Lyndi Barrett
balenciaga. Creative Director Demna Gvasalia unveiled the second couture collection for Balenciaga in a traditional salon style runway show. The crinoline skirt was a key silhouette from the collection. Some were almost too wide to fit through the doorway! This was a popular silhouette in the mid 1800 and was revived by Cristóbal Balenciaga in 1939. Many famous faces graced the runway this season. Most notably, Kim Kardashian, who has been collaborating with Demna and Balenciaga for the past few months, made her runway debut. Nicole Kidman, Dua Lipa and Bella Hadid also added to the fanfare.
fendi. We always have our eye on the accessories from the Paris shows. Our standout favourite was the jewelry, gloves, handbags at Fendi. Pave diamante gloves added sparkle to the beautiful monochromatic looks. Along with big crystal earring cuffs that needed to be hooked above to each model’s ear. The collection was inspired by Kyoto textile traditions. Designer Kim Jones said, “This season, I wanted to step away from Rome, or at least I wanted to place Rome in a global context. In this collection, we are looking at fragments of different cities, namely Kyoto, Paris and Rome. The fragmentary nature of things is echoed throughout the collection, like snatches of memory or the impression of things past, present, and future.”
olivier rousteing for jean paul gaultier. Continuing the new tradition of having a guest designer at Jean Paul Gaultier, Olivier Rousteing presented the latest couture collection to a very excited audience. The show paid tribute to iconic JPG designs including stripes, tattoos motifs, the cone bra and even a full look inspired by the fragrance bottle. The show was joyous and felt like a true celebration of the brand, and its founder. JPG was a big inspiration to Rousteing growing up, noting backstage, “This show is an open letter to Jean Paul, an open letter of love.”
chanel. Chanel staged their couture show in a horse-riding center on the outskirts of Paris. The usual Grand Palais location is still under renovation, but this location provided the perfect backdrop for the equestrian inspired show. We loved the black cowboy boots paired with wide brimmed hats—an ode to Coco Chanel’s early career as a milliner. “In this new collection, there are suits, long dresses like Mademoiselle Chanel imagined them in the 1930s: fitted to the body even though they have strong shoulders here, and pleated dresses like the wedding dress for instance,” said creative director Virginie Viard.
valentino couture. Showcasing in Rome, Creative Director Pierpaolo Piccioli took the Valentino Couture show back to its roots. The presentation was on the Spanish steps in Rome with models sauntering down the iconic steps in the most lavish couture garments. The collection was titled The Beginning and was an homage to the history of the brand. The spectacular collection included over 100 looks featuring feathers, cascading ruffles, and so many beautiful silhouettes. Co-founder Giancarlo Giammetti celebrated his 90th birthday this year and was seen beaming watching the show. His partner, Valentino Garavani first presented his collection on the Spanish steps in July 1996. Many guests sat front row wearing Valentino’s signature pink collection from last season, along with the now very popular stacked up heels. Pierpaolo took his final bow accompanied by the Atelier team who descended the Spanish steps as the golden sunlight illuminated the spectacular collection.