Elie Saab is a very reliable designer when it comes to creating stunning and elegant dresses. He knows how to work fabric in a way that is so unique to his designs. Elie Saab’s spring-summer 2014 Haute Couture collection was purely breathtaking (as they always are.) As per usual, Elie Saab had no shortage of modest and graceful gowns and dresses filled with intricate embellishment and rich colors. I love to see that he is experimenting more with shapes and techniques, but I still wish he pushed the boundaries a tad more. I believe that we will always need a designer like him for Haute Couture. Because his creations really focus on beadwork and fabric, Elie Saab’s creations make for an experience of grandeur like no other.
Chanel showed its Haute Couture collection at its staple venue, the Grand Palais. The scenery was amazing, as Chanel is known to have creative runways. It was like a glimpse into the future, in a revolving ice palace. Even though this is Haute Couture, I loved the way the models casually trotted down the steps in sneakers, hinting at the famed Chanel atelier staircase. Creative director and fashion legend, Karl Lagerfeld knew how to make it more modern and still somehow classically Chanel. The collection was full of tweed skirt suits and embellished gowns with a more athletic twist for the 21st century. It was, at times too simplistic and the proportions were way off on some of the lengths, feathers, and the skirts and tops with the tight things underneath. This made the models look more un-proportional and just weird. However I did love the use of origami like folding and classic Chanel motifs and silhouettes. I don’t think the whole sporty thing belongs in the world of Haute Couture, but who doesn’t want to go rollerblading with Chanel knee pads.
Since taking over for Valentino himself, Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pier Paolo Piccoli have turned the label into a truly milti-genorational fashion powerhouse. Valentino’s Haute Couture collection was a jungle inspired show of talent, beauty and art. This collection featured animal scenes that looked hand painted and stunning tulle confections (like the one Katy Perry wore to the Grammys.) Valentino has certain drama and theatrics that naturally comes with the brand. I love the way Maria and Pier Paolo make a long sleeved gown look so sexy and a plain ensemble look fluid and interesting. Remember, modest is hottest!
Dior is my all time favorite designer ever. I am head- over- heels in love the history, french chicness, craftsmanship, and overall aura that is Dior. Christian Dior practically invented Haute Couture! However, I really feel for Raf Simons because it must be so difficult to design for a maximalist house when your aesthetic is minimalist. For me, the best part about Dior is the shapes. As Christian Dior was an architect, it is only fitting that his designs involve so many shapes, i.e the New Look. Raf Simons really focuses on these shapes and gives them a modern twist. My favorite collection from him was his first, Haute Couture fall-winter 2012. This was the perfect combination of both aesthetics coming together to create something amazing. It kills me to say this, but this most recent collection fell a little flat for me. I am sure the detail is so much more incredible in person, but some of the looks were weird. Some had one thing that threw the entire look off. The other ensembles of this collection were okay and a few looks were great. A handful of the jumpsuits, gowns, suits, and crop tops/skirts with the painted sceneries were stunning. Unfortunately, I did not get Dior from this collection and I hope Raf will find his path with his designs again. I pray this is just a quick phase, but I will not be a fair weather fan.