Haute Couture Day 1 - Dior et al, We Miss Lacroix
I still can't believe we have haute couture week without Christian Lacroix, but there it is. The last I heard, there was a bid from a Sheikh that was about to become a sale but the paperwork wasn't submitted by the early December deadline. It was going to be some kind of massive licensing deal and from the sounds of it the Lacroix name would be on everything from your clothes to your spoon rest. Something like that. Last reports said it was still going to happen, but do we really care as this proposed incarnation is not the Lacroix we miss dearly? I guess time will tell. But if the deal supports the revival of the haute couture then I don't care if they put the name on toilet paper. I just want to see those ridiculously lush dresses whose details even have little details. In the meantime, the man himself is busy designing costumes in Paris so he's not sitting at home staring at an empty sketch pad.
On to Christian Dior. I know Galliano likes his makeup more severe than Joan Crawford wearing a Croydon face lift but I can never get used to seeing these lovely, fresh faces made harsh to the point of being almost unrecognisable. These eyebrows could not be more Dietrich and even border on an homage to Divine (I'd give a link for those unfamiliar but you'd be mad at me for showing you). We have the Little Bo Peep-type looks, some ladies who want to whip you into shape and of course those gorgeous, massive gowns (though a wee bit less massive than we've seen before).
And arguably the most entertaining part of any Dior show, the finale where Galliano fights his chronic shyness and inferiority issues and somehow manages to squeak out a bow:
Alexis Mabille went full-on with the two-tone - hair and all, and presented a bride in a 2-in-1 dress with attached sheer veil. Good for holiday weddings where malaria might be an issue:
Anne Valérie Hash gave us looks that couldn't quite be defined in a quick and easy Grazia way (thank you for that) and that's because according to Style.com they are made up of pieces of clothing given to her by the people she most admires, at her request, to create a collection about personal clothing, memory and identity. These include Alber Elbaz's pyjamas, Tilda Swinton's Vivienne Westwood tee, Jean Paul Gaultier's Breton shirt, Pete Doherty's frogged drummer-boy jacket (someone still admires him? You have to love the French, they don't let a thing like crack and heroine addiction and open facial sores taint the enchanting allure of a poet's soul), a veil from Diane Pernet, a Chanel jacket from Daphne Guinness, and a spencer belonging to Charlotte Rampling. She made copies of the elements of the garments and included some pieces of the original items in her designs as well.
I wonder if she's going to use any of the original pieces for the orders?
Here's Gaultier's Breton shirt worked into a sequin all-in-one:
I'm not sure whose clothes these are composed of but they are just so cool:
This is Thimister (is it just me or do you read that as 'Thighmaster', too?). He took a decade's hiatus from haute couture and chose to show his Fall 2010 collection rather than spring. I didn't know you could do that! I think there are special considerations for haute couture. These dresses aren't particularly representative of his minimal 90s military collection that featured lots of bloodshed red but, well, I just like them better than blood spattered white jodphurs:
And finally, Armani Privé, a name I now cannot hear without thinking of Rachel Zoe. If you watch The Rachel Zoe Project you'll know I'm talking about Season 2 where she had the Armani team fly in that gorgeous beaded ivory strapless dress for Anne 'Annie' Hathaway to wear to the Oscars and asked for a train to be added and they gave her two. Then she went with the train-less dress. That takes guts.
These remind me of that dress and I'm betting she's got her eye on a few of them for one of her girls - the one Karlie Kloss is wearing (bottom left) is pretty special - but will she have to Americanize it? Did anyone else wish she had kept the Chanel haute couture dress for Cameron Diaz as it was? I'd like to see her use her influence to push what the public deems 'acceptable', and then maybe Maggie Gyllenhaal wouldn't have to take so much flack for her educated fashion choices! But I suppose when an actress' career hinges on her success on the red carpet, one can't take these chances. Crazy, I tell ya.
All images from Style.com