The Paris Haute Couture Spring/Summer 2014 collections, which took place from January 20–24, premièred some of the world’s most exquisite fashion creations, helped in no small part by the designers’ daring use of Swarovski crystals. We take a look at the front-runners.
There is certainly nothing shy and retiring about Vauthier’s springtime vamp goddess: she prowls down the catwalk in a gold-encrusted, crisp white tailored bodysuit. Arching those shoulders under a thrown-on power-bomber, accessorized with a slashed-to-the-navel white shirt (plus Swarovski crystals, naturally). Slinking around in a triumphantly daring leopard gown, and layering divine statement crystal neckwear over her cocktail-hour attire. Sheer drama. Wow.
Mabille’s work always has a dream-like touch to it, and this latest offering kept to his pretty-but-modern aesthetic—very ‘Cinderella goes to the ball in 2014’. He showed mouth-wateringly beautiful gowns, some with a touch of Grecian-inspired drapery, in the softest champagne hues. His luscious silks and satins were given a princess edge with delicate, enhancing crystal work that truly celebrated the hourglass form. A more than elegant display.
New members are not often inaugurated into the prestigious Chambre Syndicale in Paris (haute couture’s governing body), so new designers are all the more rare and exquisite when discovered. Yiqing has been a guest on the schedule since 2012, so she is still in her couture infancy. Yet this certainly does not detract from the intricate wonder of the work she’s producing. Her gentle but purposeful scattering of pearls and crystals over delicate eveningwear is pure mastery.
There’s an enduring appeal to the sartorial traditions of the showgirl, and one that’s often seen in Paris, sometimes artfully done and sometimes slightly less so. The key is to engage in the seductive drama of that historic style motif without being slavish or tacky, which is easier said than done. And so to Serkan’s collection, a designer who most definitely pulls it off: his work has drama, along with the kind of va-va-voom that celebrates the feminine shape, as shown in his sheer modern corsetry, while the ordered embellishment on his cocktail dresses show his skill in precision tailoring. He has a knack of bringing calm to a highly charged fashion arena.
Photography for Alexis Mabille by B.I.A.