Last night’s On|Off presents exhibition in Bloomsbury Square was a thrilling affair. The venue was the basement of Victoria House and it felt modern and fresh with simple white walls and lighting. People chatted and cameras clicked in a hub of anticipation, taking in the mini exhibitions and shop floors of designers who have been previously presented by On|Off. These includedMichela Carraro whose work is exhibited permanently in Vienna, Prose Studio who are now stocked in Topshop, Oxford Circus thanks to representation from On/Off andYang Du who has even dressed Lady Gaga.
The show itself was modern and minimal, yet with lots of detailing and structure. Colours were very monotone, in fact almost all black and white with a touch of navy. We also saw leather, military looks and lots of texture. Highlights of the runway would have to be Samantha Cole’s strong looks combined with the gorgeous knitwear of Derek Lawlor, whose looks were stylish and wearable. The Txell Miras collection was also beautiful. ESVIE was positioned right behind the Catalan designer’s people who were whooping and clapping as well as chatting away in Spanish! MR + MR was the only menswear collection on the runway and showcased lots of tuxedo inspired pieces in many different ways, including a fur hoody and leather shirt. You can check it all out here.
Also worth mentioning was the tribute to Alexander McQueen positioned on a wall on the way into the catwalk area. People were buzzing around an installation of 40 iPods containing each of his 40 collections for Givenchy and for his own label. Visitors flicked through pictures of each outfit on the runway. As one, the pieces showed what an artist he really was.
Couture week is all about indulgence. It is fantastical one-of-a-kind joy before the seriousness of Fashion Week really starts. Not that it is something to be taken lightly. The skill involved is so intense that even the simplest of couture dresses can cost thousands of pounds. But that is the beauty of couture. Escapism, fantasy and splendor all rolled into one fabulously fun-filled week in the home of le mode, Paris.
Dior started the proceedings with a hoard of rose-covered romantic Victorian heroines in light and frilly gowns. Riccardo Tisci didn’t completely abandon black at Givenchy, but really embraced the softness of spring with satin and feathers. Armani’s offerings made the current red carpet season shrink into background with impossibly beautiful, yet strong and modern-looking gowns. Chanel continued the modern, silver galactic look with a hint of soft elegance, whilst Jean Paul Gaultier and Valentino brought a little more colour to the fore with inspiration from Mexico and the seasons respectively.
Shades of SS10 were evident throughout every show with nudes and pastels taking centre stage in beautifully soft silks, satins and chiffons. There is also a tendency with couture to be very traditional and often difficult to wear, yet many of the dresses were knee-length and simple with detailed accessories. And with the modern, galactic influence with the silver, which lifted the soft palette, the looks are actually entirely wearable! All in all, it was a fantastic tribute to spring and to the new decade as well as a brilliant indication of just how exciting AW10 Fashion Weeks just may be!
Here is a picture of Rihanna this week sporting the exact look, straight off the Givenchy catwalk. The Verdict? She looks good, though I’m not so sure about the outfit in terms of setting! It’s a little heavy for a sunny day… still at least she’s got her shades on!
The star is doing well in fashion at the moment, having been chosen to star in the Gucci ad as part of their tattoo heart campaign to raise money for UNICEF.