Thursday, March 8, 2012

Paris Fashion Week: Recap Time!

Chanel F/W 2012

"Each day of the Paris fall shows seemed to provide proof that, in fashion, nothing is too strange, comical, or grandiose."

So said NY Times Fashion Critic Cathy Horyn in her Paris Fashion Week "Runway Report." Judging from the photo from the Chanel show above, where models walked against a backdrop of enormous quartz crystals jutting into the sky, Horyn's words certainly seem to be true.

While I haven't followed fashion—and especially fashion weeks—long enough to be considered anything besides "sort-of-but-not-really-knowledgeable" about the field, I can't help but feel that this year's Paris Fall/Winter ready-to-wear collections were particularly stunning.

Each day has been more colorful, more lavish, more amazingly creative than the next, and each time I've tweeted or blogged about another fantastic show, I've realized that there was another fantastic show I forgot to mention all together or hadn't remembered to check up on. While I'm curious to see what trends will come out of PFW and the F/W 2012 shows as a whole, based on this week's shows alone, I've made some preliminary guesses:

Leather— It was EVERYWHERE. And not just in quintessential black or beige tones.
Primary colors— Many designers created all-red, yellow, green, or blue looks.
Also, color in general!– I was incredibly excited that, especially after the first couple of days, many designers broke out of the black/brown/navy rut that fall fashion tends to get us stuck in and injected healthy, healthy doses of color—from neons to bolds to metallics— into their collections.
Embellishment—Chanel had lots of glitter. Louis Vuitton had lots of beading. Get ready to get sparkly.
Velvet— Yep. It was a part of several runway looks. Velvet pants...velvet shirts...velvet jackets...Love it or hate it (though, why would you hate it?!).

Though minimalism will, rightfully, always be the sensibility of certain fashion houses and designers—I'm looking at you Chloe, Celine, and Stella McCartney— this year's Paris shows seem to indicate that opulence and decadence are back in style. Whether this is harmful or hopeful in the context of a world still trying to piece itself together after a global recession is debatable. However, if only to appreciate the mind-boggling ingenuity displayed in the past week, it may be best not to over think it. For now.

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