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Haute Couture shows its vitality in Paris

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Robin Driver
Published
today Jan 22, 2020
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A number of brands hosted runway shows alongside big names like Chanel, Armani and Givenchy on Tuesday, proving once again that Parisian Haute Couture is still full of vitality. Julien Fournié, for example, presented a collection for Spring/Summer 2020 based on the figure of the adventurer, revisiting the safari jacket for a particularly notable ultra-chic explorer look. 
 

Julien Fournié - Spring-Summer 2020 - Haute Couture - Paris - © PixelFormula


On this catwalk, the women were full of character and refused to go unnoticed, especially when they moved, squeezed into their retro suits made from super-fine wool, or twirling in bubbly tulle dresses, worn with little snakeskin blousons or men's jackets with power shoulders. 
 
For evening, the silhouette was elongated with split caftans decorated with embroidery, while on other pieces it was the buttons that served as decoration. Waists were cinched with belts featuring hanging tassels ending in bouquets of long, colourful fringe.

Fringe also decorated the butterfly sleeves of a dress, transforming them into a kind shawl. Elsewhere, it cascaded the length of the arms and body of a bright red outfit.

At Alexandre Vauthier, everything shone. Banker suits displayed sparkling pinstripes, and mini-dresses were decorated with sequined vines, while bootlaces were silvered, and skirts and sirwals were made in crunchy golden fabric. Several ensembles reimagined animal prints in black and white material embroidered with sequins. 

Shimmering drapery left hips and shoulders bare. Vaporous frilled dresses alternated with masculine looks featuring dinner jackets and bow ties, creating a festive spirit with a theatrical touch, summed up in the long black feathers that some models sported on their heads.

As for Stéphane Rolland, the French couturier sent out long, curvy dresses designed for sci-fi vestals, in a palette dominated by brilliant white. Collars and waistbands were accented with diamonds, while porthole-like cut-outs opened at the chest. 

The looks descended the catwalk majestically, with the Eiffel Tower visible through the expansive windows of the Palais de Chaillot behind them. Large silk crepe petals were wrapped around the bust of sculptured dresses, while the couturier also slit garments from foot to waist, revealing models' legs up to the hip. 

Ronald van der Kemp's namesake label RVDK received its guests at the Hôtel d'Avary, the residence of the Dutch ambassador, where he sent out a collection mixing glamorous looks with more day-to-day outfits. Everything, from furs, suits, capes and bustier dresses with large bows, to long coats, jackets and jeans, was made with recycled materials from the brand's own stock and previous collections.

The Dutch designer is one of the first to have adopted upcycling in Haute Couture. As he wrote in his programme notes, "we haven't produced any fabrics or skins. All of the materials used already existed and came from our old couture stocks, vintage collections, waste from previous seasons, recycled jeans etc."
 

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