Paris Couture Week: Versace

As the Fashion Flock gather in Paris for Paris Couture Week, I’m sad to say that today I’m cooped up in the UK, not cleared to fly after complications during surgery last week *sadface*.

Couture Week is one of my favourite fixtures in the fashion calendar, it’s when designers wheel out the big guns and the artistry and craftsmanship is second to none.  Let it be said that couture can NEVER be replicated on the high street and if you see it attempted – back away slowly…..

Everything about Couture Week is over the top, even the street stylers take it up a notch during this assembly of the worlds finest couturiers; the gowns are spectacular and the couture brides are to die for, it’s as much about spectacle and marvel and ‘look what I can do’ as it is about beautiful gowns.  First up, Atelier Versace.  After an awful few months for Paris, Couture Week has put fashion firmly back at the top of the gorgeous city’s agenda, proving that Paris will not be moved from what it so beautifully stands for.

The Fash Pack descended on the first of the couture shows and revelled in awe at the bespoke runway consisting of 25,000 real orchids encased under glass creating a violet and golden coloured brick effect.

The show opened with current Versace muse and Vogue cover girl, Lara Stone in a bohemian style dipped hem frock with seventies style colour matched disco boots, setting the tone for the whole show, closely followed by several pastel coloured looks in the same vein.  Very frothy and pretty but tame by Couture Week standards.

With a whole host of Versace muses past and present from Sasha Luss and Anya Rubik through to Lara Stone and Doutzen Kroes, Donatella’s goddess’ were joined by Kendall Jenner making her debut for the house of Versace, and in couture no less.  Nice work if you can get it.

As the shows story progressed, the gowns became more dramatic with that Versace modern classic split characteristic creeping in.  With sheer panels and frothy detailing, gowns appeared to float as their long lines covered models feet.

In what is surely Donatella’s strongest couture presentation since Atelier Versace’s relaunch in 2012, the designer appears to have found her groove and she’s milking it for all it’s worth.  With fashion thoroughbreds, including Naomi Campbell and Rosie Huntington Whiteley changing into runway fresh gowns for the amfAR dinner later tonight, the brands exposure is huge, and for all the right reasons.

For the climax of the show, Donatella brought out the heavyweights, (or maybe that should be featherweights?)  The gowns were wispy and featherlight, seemingly floating on a breeze.  Gowns trailed past onlookers creating a ‘just descended from heaven’ effect and bodices were fashioned from wrought iron giving a tough, aggressive edge.  This was raw femininity with an industrial vibe.

The show closed with Karlie Kloss in an ethereal mauve gown which she was sewn into backstage, topped with a Coachella worthy crown.  With uber floaty swathes of fabric, the procession of models appeared to glide down the runway, like an aggressive gang of industrial goddesses on a mission.

The collection is strong.  – So strong in fact that there are flashes of 90’s Gianni through it, especially in the structured black numbers.  With Donatella Versace cementing herself perfectly as a prime fixture of Couture Week, I’m excited about what’s to come.  With Dior, Giambattista Valli and Chanel in the coming days who knows what Paris has in store for us…

Pixie x

Every look from the Atelier Versace show is in the slideshow below.

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