Riccardo Tisci is definitely waking up a happy man this morning, or at least a tad bit happier than usual. To launch her big comeback at last night's Super Bowl, Madonna chose several custom-designed outfits from the Givenchy Haute Couture collection and as you would expect, she nailed it.
Despite only being two seasons into his life as a couturier, Giambattista Valli has got it spot on and continues to demonstrate the confidence and ease of which you would expect from the bigger brands. Like last season, the pieces were aspirational and were steeped with opulence but were pieces you would actually want to wear, that is if you had the money of course.
Luigi Scialanga's jewellery has always complimented Valli's designs and the results of their partnership on this collection was no different. Dramatic necklaces came in multiple roses which tied in to the petal prints on strapless gowns and dramatic floral headwear that appeared throughout. The puffs of fabric on the shoulder of asymmetric chiffon ball gowns to the dramatic oversized bows on peplum outwear brought drama and the visible underwear that popped up towards the end was sexy but in a sensual Carine Roitfeld way.
A Chanel Haute Couture show has never been an easy invite to get but according to recent reports, it has just got that bit harder. The show, which will take place on Tuesday at the Grand Palais in Paris, will seat only 10 U.S. press in each of the two shows, which hasn't gone down particularly well. The cut backs with the seating this season is said to be a result of the extravagantly large set, which is said to be like nothing we've seen from the brand before.
"If a woman doesn't want 'rich', she doesn't come to couture," Elie Saab told Style.com before his couture show yesterday. The statement instantly became fitting as soon as the first few models walked the runway. Inspired by Venice's famous opera house, La Fenice, the collection was far from demure or understated. Instead, the Saab couture woman wants to make a statement and let the world know that she's recession free.
As usual, Saab focused on detail with beautiful embellishments and sequins on dresses that graceful swept the floor and decided to play with draping on elegant dresses and even on sleeves.
We saw a lot of the sheer detailing that we've seen over the last two seasons with flashes of skin under chiffon and silk tulle and red lace. Ruched velvet also appeared contrasting the lighter fabrics used particularly on the autumnal printed dresses and pussy bow blouses.
What stood out more than ever was that the collection featured everything that a woman would want in her wardrobe. One moment the designer sent down a strong sexy woman in her turquoise floor length dress with a high slit and then almost immediately after he sent a two piece skirt suit with a nude volumous blouse that would be a perfect way to be noticed in the boardroom.
Despite the show taking place only yesterday I'm sure you've all heard about the huge lion that stood centre stage in the Grand Palais with a Chanel pearl under it's paw at the brand's couture show. Once the models began to sashay down the runway all became clear. The collection was fierce and bold as the centrepiece with it's elaborate embroidery and detailing.
This season Karl Lagerfeld opted for heavy weighty fabrics compared to the loose and airy styles that we saw for Spring couture. The collection manly came in plaids, tweeds and furs in burnt oranges, browns, deep reds and royals blues; but the designer did throw in a fair share of tulle adorned with pastel-coloured flower embroidery. Lace also featured on dresses sitting comfortable just above the knee.
Proportions came in different variations from over-the-knee styles on sequin dresses - and most notably on a beautiful red corseted dress that skimmed the calf - teamed with juxtaposing cropped jackets.
Oscar de la Renta would like to get straight to the point, and so recently he told the Wall Street Journal that he thinks couture is a waste of time. "Couture has become completely irrelevant," he said. "Couture isn't necessary, even to promote the brand. Customers are smart. They know what a $10,000 wedding dress will look as beautiful as a $1 million wedding dress. Maybe it will not be finished the same way inside, but who will know?"
Good point, and as the Journal explains, the market of American socialites who parade around in their couture...just isn't there anymore. Instead, the collective wardrobe has become more casual, with collections like pre-fall and resort being introduced to the marketplace. De la Renta designed couture for Balmain from 1993 to 2002 but says he sees no point in the high-end creations anymore.
But the market isn't completely dead, as women in Russia and the Middle East are still buying. Says the Journal: "For this very moneyed class, it's less about the luxuriousness of wearing exquisite handmade to-order creations andmore about conspicuous consumption and making museums out of their closets." Take for example one sheikh's wife, who buys an average of six Elie Saab couture gowns per season. The price per dress? Try $600,000.