Womenswear goes delicate and playful at Nina Ricci, dark and sexy at Olivier Theyskens
Among the highlights of the fifth day of Paris Fashion Week on Friday, the shows from Nina Ricci and Olivier Theyskens stood out as particularly noteworthy shows. Rushemy Botter and Lisi Herrebrugh confirmed their new direction for the former, while the latter continued to develop the story of his brand. In both cases, the designers were able to win over their audiences with desirable high-quality pieces.
In particular, the second collection produced for Nina Ricci by the Dutch design duo, winners of the grand prize at the 2018 Hyères Festival, was a much-anticipated show. The couple did not disappoint, creating a wardrobe for a chic, modern Parisienne, with pieces that were both simple and sophisticated, while also being elevated by a dash of couture and punctuated with playful details.
Following the success of the wide-brimmed cloche hat, updated by the duo last season, this time round this summer collection's theme was channelled into a beach holiday version of the accessory, which was transformed into a colourful plastic bucket. It was a practical little piece that could be turned upside down and worn as a hat, or held by its handle and carried like a trendy pannier. Botter and Herrebrugh also resurrected retro floral swimming caps as chic skullcaps covered in little fabric flowers.
These same flowers could be found in red or blue on latticed tunics worn over darker outfits. For earrings, the models wore transparent bubblegum-like bubbles in shades of pink, blue and yellow. Elsewhere, the designers reimagined classic pieces with new construction techniques, as in the case of the skirted bankers' jackets puffed out at the bottom by layers of tulle.
As a poetic rain curtain created the effect of a tropical storm battering the runway, the models donned mid-length suit jackets cinched at the waist, lightweight organza ensembles, flared poncho-like silk tops or exaggeratedly low-cut blouses paired with elegant black trousers, as well as effervescently frilly bubble dresses, all in vivid tones of orange, green and yellow.
It was a different story at Olivier Theyskens, where models walked to the rhythm of Cyndi Lauper's iconic hit "Girls Just Want To Have Fun." The slender looks were balanced atop high platform sandals, the models sporting long black lashes or hiding their eyes behind giant sunglasses. Channelling a distinct femme fatale vibe, they were equally at ease in looks combining tops with shorts or culottes and corseted dresses, as they were in long lace gowns and masculine pantsuits.
The designer looked to the world of lingerie for his inspiration, but never overdid the theme. Flesh-toned silk jackets were cut with raw edges, while calf-length skirts incorporating suspender belt details at the waist were worn with only a bra or a leather tube top, leaving the models' midriffs exposed, and men's jackets were thrown on directly over bare skin. The collection was finished with a few flashes of vibrant colours, seen in a red dress or a pair of purple satin trousers.
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