As Haute Couture Week commences in Paris – the fashion industry finds itself teetering on the precipice of uncertainty. The city, marred by recent nights of tumultuous riots following the tragic police-related death of a teenager, sets the stage for a convergence of style and sociopolitical unrest. France, is the heartland of beautiful spirituous fashion brands, where elegance and luxury mix with the supernal. How will the country recover? For now, the future of peace and stability is hidden in the matrix of the future. French label Celine called off its menswear show on Sunday due to the riots. Designer Hedi Slimane says it is “inconsiderate” to hold a fashion show when Paris is “bereaved and bruised”. Here is how the week’s festivities kicked off:
In the wake of 17-year-old Nahel M.’s tragic death, an uproar of rebellion has swept the nation. The official review found that legal standards had not been met for the officer to use his gun. Nahel’s injuries resulted from a close range shot.
Mr Macron has condemned the violence “with the greatest firmness” and said Nahel’s death had been used to justify acts of violence – calling it an “unacceptable exploitation of the adolescent’s death”.
Amidst the backdrop of a waning tide of violence in and around the illustrious French capital, the pinnacle of fashion – Haute Couture Fashion Week has arrived.
Schiaparelli is Impossibly Beautiful
Up first is Schiaparelli. After the cataclysmic social media frenzy following last season’s animal heads, we have been eagerly awaiting this debut. The animal heads, instantly famous thanks to celebrities like Kylie Jenner, were a massive triumph for Daniel Roseberry, artistic director of Schiaparelli. Under his guidance, the brand has undergone a significant transformation. These days, it garners the attention and patronage of celebrity clients Lady Gaga and Beyoncé.
On Monday (July 3), Grammy-winning “WAP” rapper, Cardi B, showed up to the runway event wearing a custom Schiaparelli couture look designed by Roseberry himself. Wearing the brand’s signature black and gold colour palette, the Bronx rapper sat front row alongside Emmy Award-nominated actress Tracee Ellis Ross.
Although there are references to artists such as Jack Whitten, Sarah Lucas, Salvador Dal, Joan Miró, and Matisse, this collection reads more like a retrospective of Schiaparelli’s oeuvre.
Fall 2023 couture is led by freedom and form; the show notes called it:
“an impossible wardrobe.” “There’s a sense of disobedience; these are pieces a woman can assemble however she wants”
The latest Dior couture collection from designer Maria Grazia Chiuri appeared in Paris’ Musee Rodin, against a backdrop of landscapes by artist Marta Roberti.
Roberti’s imaginative sculptures of exotic birds and ethereal forests provide a stunning backdrop for the designs inspired by strength, feminism, and the divine. Actresses Natalie Portman and Rosamund Pike sit amongst the A-listers in attendance.
Saudi Arabia on the International Stage
Saudi Arabia, driven by its ambitious aspirations to cultivate a thriving fashion sector, is leaving an indelible mark on this season’s proceedings.
Couturier Mohammed Ashi debuts his collection on 6th July. And he’s the first Saudi designer to showcase his eponymous label as an official participant on the roster. This unprecedented development is a significant milestone, highlighting the growing influence and recognition of Saudi designers on the international stage.
Ashi’s inclusion not only showcases his exceptional talent but also serves as a testament to the increasing diversity and inclusivity within the realm of high fashion.
Ashi is a long-time darling of the celebrity circuit, dressing a variety of famous figures. Some of the names include Queen Rania of Jordan, Penelope Cruz, and Phoebe Waller-Bridge; who attended the London premiere of the latest Indiana Jones film wearing one of his exquisite ensembles.
Before settling in France, Ashi built a name for himself in the United States, where he received his training, before working for Givenchy and Lebanese couturier Elie Saab.
Stay tuned for more updates.
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