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The woman shines on |


The woman shines on

Ria de Borja - The Philippine Star

PARIS — YStyle had the pleasure of attending a number of shows in Paris for the spring/summer 2014 season. We decided to chronicle what it felt like in the shows –– without losing sight of why we were there in the first place: to see the clothes. Among our favorites were the Olympia Le-Tan, Givenchy and Sonia Rykiel shows. Shine was an important component in the collections — it’s an apparent trend for next season –– but there was most importantly the originality of each brand, all of which displayed striking, beautiful femininity.


As Kim Kardashian and Kanye West entered the Halle Freyssinet where the Givenchy spring/summer 2014 show was held, photographers by the entrance, packed like sardines, screamed their names out loud repeatedly. It was pure frenzy, and the set inside the venue was rivaled only by the smoking hot audience, which included Ciara, Lily Collins and Natalia Vodianova (whom the photographers outside went wild for as well). A pile of cars, Mercedeses and Audis being the most visible, were smashed into a debacle in the center of the floor, still smoking and fresh from its wreck. The lights dimmed and tribal calls emerged from the two bands playing inside two rectangular holes in the walls. Out came the collection: a visual feast of sumptuous clothing in rich, shiny fabrics. Influences seemed to range from African plains, but with their fall and richness transformed into Givenchy’s spring/summer vision. Drapes accessorized tightly-hugged torsos; braided tidbits, arm-band details and printed collaged materials in bronze, mahogany and brown were inspired by the aforementioned continent. And then there were the robes that looked a very ready-to-wear (and glamorous) version on martial arts gear. But the feeling one was left with after the global-inspired collection — which included what looked like evocations of glittered saris — was not the breakdown of elements but pure fashion fervor, done to its finest.

Olympia Le-Tan

The show was held at L’Aquarium de Paris, a place with over 10,000 species of fish held in 43 aquariums. The backdrop was in perfect tandem with the show, which was called “A Girl in Every Port.” In the same manner as last season’s show, which was inspired by The Sound of Music, A Girl in Every Port is a Groucho Marx film made in 1952 — the collection expanded into so much more than its original reference and became tongue-in-cheek. The silhouettes hugged the body and dispelled a feeling of wit and games. In the hands of Le-Tan, each model was dolled up and laughing flirtatiously in their stockings, heels and mini, frilly skirts. Down to the book-titled clutches, like Moby Dick, there was an irony and a playful take in the collection.


Bleachers had been set up and an editor commented, “The spaces between the rows freak me out.” Her worry was short-lived: when the first look came onto the runway there was nothing to fill the mind but the gloss of the Lanvin spring/summer 2014 collection. The shimmer of the clothes captivated, and upon closer look one realized the technical proficiency of the fabrics, which included organza, brocade, lamé, embroidered lace and shiny animal prints. Each ensemble sparkled more brilliantly than the last as ruffles, pleats and giant bows competed for attention — before melding together in total looks. There were little black ensembles for the less adventurous but no less fashionable clients of the house in feminine silhouettes.

Elie Saab

YStyle was sitting across Alexa Richards in the Elie Saab show and the lightbulbs flashed a thousand times before the show began. As the lights went down, before the show began, a more lowkey and more beautiful woman caught our attention. It was Thai Princess Sirivannavari Nariratana, whose makeup, with its eyeliner extending out with a line upwards; and stance, made her look regal: just the right customer for Elie Saab, who is known for dressing royalty. The designer’s collection included the usual lace dresses, oft with a snug upper body. It was the white part of the collection that felt new. Lace covered the breasts in rows of ruffles in one design, and loosely fell as 3/4 sleeves in another. The color felt right in tops with tiny peplums at the waist, or with embroidered appliqués at the bodice. Printed with fuchsia and green flowers at the hem of a long, loose A-line piece or at the neckline or a blouse, the whites stood out among his staples of red and green monochrome ensembles. The show ended with all-black lace and choffon looks that are sure to fill the Saab events — “basics” wardrobes of its clients.

Sonia Rykiel

Model Hanne Gaby Odiele strode down the runway a few looks into the Sonia Rykiel spring/summer show in sunglasses that had little spikes sticking out and a large grandmother cardigan –– and the show suddenly felt very French: casual-chic with a slight wit and a clear light-handedness. The knits were slightly shimmery, all had an air of je ne sais quoi, as if they had been thrown on without a care. The Sonia Rykiel woman was ready-to-go and on-the-go, but not too hurriedly, even with a slightly askew belt, sweaters that were unevenly buttoned and hems that fell in an almost-odd below mid-calf length. Breton stripes and argyle-printed Lurex simultaneously clung and hung on the body in a just-right silhouette –– a flattering shape that any girl, French otherwise, could feel at ease in. The brand’s designer Geraldo da Conceição has hit ready-to-wear on the mark.


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