In a whirlwind of emotions from Trump’s inauguration, to an empowering Women’s March, the Paris Haute Couture Shows fell at the end of a history making month this January. In a time where people are seeking some form of escape from reality (and who can blame them?), the fashion world certainly pulled through.
Haute Couture can be as visionary as any other art form, from the clothes down to the extravagant sets. Dior’s Maria Grazia Chiuri drew on the house’s founder’s love of gardens, where a masked ball took place focusing on black tailoring and beautiful gowns. Meanwhile, Lagerfeld’s Chanel spectacle replicated Coco’s mirrored stairway, giving the audience a 360 view of waist-cinching tweed suits and fully sequined gowns with stunning feather details.
Presenting a complete juxtaposition to these dreamlike fantasies, visionary Iris Van Herpen focused on the imperfections of systems and structure in both the physical and digital world. Van Herpen collaborated with Ester Stoker, known for the manipulation of dimensional geometries. Presented in a minimal colour palette of black and white, the garments created a hypnotic, repetitive pattern that defined the silhouettes. The show took place in a darkened basement, separated by white zigzag lines which rose and fell in the shape of tiny pyramids.
As always, Couture Week created an inspiring oasis, a dream-like fantasy that distorted a, quite frankly, bleak reality in an appropriately surreal way, if just for a few days.