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Thursday, January 31, 2013

Ulyana Sergeenko Haute Couture: sweet sophomore

Ulyana Sergeenko had her second Haute Couture show last week at the Théâtre Marigny.  I loved walking in to spot all of the Ulyana clones with long prairie dresses, braids and a ethereal aura.  There is just something so special about this style of dress that intrigues me.

The show opened with the music of Somewhere Over the Rainbow quietly humming.  So much more restrained and less costume-y than her last show, these clothes remained true to the Ulyana spirit while also becoming wearable.  

Pieces were adorned with precise embroidery, lace and pleats.  Her accessories were endearing and sweet: parasols, hats, small clutches and lace gloves.  

An Americana theme was brought to life as Copland's Rodeo: Hoe-Down exploded through the small theater.  And the musical overture from the movie Rocky  (downloaded immediately). Dorothy from Oz visited and as a Southern girl, I couldn't miss Scarlett walk the runway.  

The show ended with a little peek-a-boo from Ulyana from within the little book at the back of the runway.  And then the sweet sounds of Tara started as the crowd exited the theater, Gone With the Wind.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Chanel Haute Couture: my virgin walk through the woods

I'm not sure which child of mine he promised to get us into the Chanel Haute Couture show, but somehow Cameron Silver did it.  And, boy, was it worth it! (no one has come to collect yet)  After walking through sleet and snow to make the Dior show the evening before, it was almost a relief to only have to walk along a boardwalk and through sand to get to Chanel. Held at The Nave of the Grand Palais, the setting was outside in the woods with birds chirping and baby buds on trees just beginning to show.

The models entered from the back, almost like ladies who had gotten lost from the party and had found themselves in an enchanted forest.  With drippy mascara and wilted feathers in hair, these confused and forlorn girls slowly walked through the sandy stage, looking up at the spectators in indifference.

My spring shoe must-have
My first Chanel Haute Couture, I was expecting heavy tweeds and aging suits.  But instead there were light frocks and beautifully sculptured thigh-high lace boots in ivory and black.  The show started in white and creams, dreamily urging us to relax into the heavenly world of Chanel.

The blacks started in, blending in the tradition of the Coco Chanel black and white dresses.  Empire waists and plays on French maid looks and even a touch of Audrey Hepburn in My Fair Lady made appearances.

Then the metallics began with black knits and silver metallic thigh-high boots.


Flowers and colors began popping up in the most beautiful beaded gowns, simultaneously with the increasingly frenetic quality of the music.  Models walked faster and one twirled about, happy to perhaps be free from the ball she had once been attending.

Things settled down again as ivory dresses rich in feathers, beads and silks reappeared in a dramatic way.  It was at this point that I think I whispered aloud, 'I don't want it to end...'

And then the two brides emerged through the forest, holding the hand of a small boy cherub.  Making his point known on his stance on the controversial French debate of Gay Marriage, Karl Lagerfeld gently reminded everyone that love and sweetness and tolerance could just be the thing to get you out of your own lost forest.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Alexis Mabille: the whimsical prince of haute couture

Following a Dior Haute Couture show must be daunting, but Alexis Mabille stepped up with his incredibly elegant collection this 2013 season.

Alexis always does something a little funky with hair and make up, and this year it was all about the hair.  Models donned silver painted braids that were surprising but also chic and young (silver, young?) and cool.

Pants began the show - another surprise.  I'm definitely ordering the silver cigarette pants that came down the runway.  The severe skinnys were shown with delicate and girlie tops that were fun and sweet.

A 2 piece gown - thinking I'll pair this top with my silver  cigarette pants

The color palette started out with pale, calming colors that moved into silvers and grays, then black.

The black tuxedo gown is almost a must-have for every woman in the world.  This silhouette works on any figure and on any age.  This black dress stole the show.

And then some Alexis fantasy came through.  In color.  A column red dress was the signature Alexis for me.  Known for his bows, this dress was almost wrapped up top with a bow, but in such a sophisticated and stunning way.

Another Met option, modified, of course
Then came pinks and more bows.

The canary yellow pleated gown was the marriage of Hollywood glamour and Parisian chic.

Alexis has really proven himself as a first class couturier with this show.  Blending the simple line with the exotic dream is Alexis.  His clothes are as special and as endearing as he.