Bienvenue, #PFW

Wake up Paris... It's Fashion Week!
It's the most wonderful time of the year... Paris Fashion Week Ready-to-Wear Fall/Winter 2012! Which means the whirlwind of show hopping, street styling, and looking your utmost fabulous has begun. Be sure to check back for posts on shows, what I wore, and other fashion fun. But if you just can't wait until then, you can always follow me on Twitter or Facebook for live updates while I'm at the shows!

Interested in what shows I'll be attending? Checkout my new 'Agenda' tab at the top for my calendar of Quinntessential events.

Today, my fashion week begins with Moon Young Hee 14h, Corrado de Biase 16h, Aganovich 19h, and Steffie Christiaens 21h.

I'm ready for a full, but fantastic week! See you on the other side...
xx, Q.

[credit: picship]


Young, Talented, and Schizophrenic: Podium Jeunes Stylistes

Shuko Inaba's glowing gown
As a goodbye to Haute Couture, and a hello to Prêt-à-Porter, Podium Stylistes hosted its third annual Podium Jeunes Stylistes competition at The Westin in Paris. Chosen from nearly 200 applicants, 15 designers were given 100 days, one theme, and required material to create one ready-to-wear and two couture looks. Podium Stylistes asked the competing designers to “dissect their [minds]” for this year’s theme, schizophrenia, “not in the sense of having a double personality, but rather in losing contact with their current mindset of being ‘young designers’. They have to reach the absolute limit of their reasoning.” These young designers were also given a base fabric of silk crepe, which was to be incorporated into their looks. Not surprisingly, we saw many designs alluding to mental institutions with sterile white garments and straightjacket like belting, but those who dug deeper into the theme, presented collections that were the hallmarks of the show. 

Paul May's intricate cape
For me, three designers ruled the show: Shuko Inaba, Paul May Levanho, and Lou de Testa. Shuko Inaba sent out two quirky couture looks accessorized with multicolored, multi-sized balls that lit up, playing with the phrase “losing one’s marbles” in her designs. The hooded first look suggested a sac of marbles that hung from the model’s head. Inaba closed the show with her second couture look, which lit up with balls that rolled down the back of the gown and gathered in its train.

Paul May, winner of the Jury’s Honorary Prize, not only stood out by risking a menswear collection, but also by creating incredibly ornate coats. Backstage, before the show, Melissa from Prête-Moi-Paris and I had marveled at the beautiful coats with their intricate detailing. After the show, we spoke with May who explained how he had cut the lattice design he used in the sleeves of his final look. With his talent for detail and his ability to take great risks, he is a young designer to keep an eye on.

Lou de Testa's show stopping couture
Lou de Testa won the grand prize as Best Young Designer of the Year. The 24 year old Paris native was rewarded with a full scholarship to attend Paris Factory Mode & Design at ESCP Europe “a brand new Masters in fashion and business sponsored by Podium and the prestigious Paris business school”, and the exhibition of her outfits at the Apparelsourcing Paris trade show, giving her “a real boost… to make [herself] known to the general public and fashion professionals in Paris and beyond”. Lou drew her inspiration from owls and their schizophrenic temperaments– the passive observer and the aggressive predator. “[Developing] duality in every aspect of the clothes”, Lou created constricted yet flowing shapes, used lively yet somber colors, and mélanged sharp and soft materials. Contrasting sharp and soft with the use of feathers in each of her garments, she constructed metallic feathers, fashioned like armor and combined them with soft, blustery ostrich feathers. Melissa and I were able to speak with Lou before the show, and I was highly impressed with her different take on schizophrenia. The designer looked past the obvious and created spectacular, true couture looks that stole the show. My choice for the winning designer was confirmed when the judges announced Lou as the Best Young Designer of the Year. Congratulations to Lou, she has a great vision and fantastic creativity.

UPDATE 28/02/2012: If you're in Paris, you are able to see Lou's designs on display now at The Westin Paris -Vendôme 3, rue de Castiglione, 1er. You have no reason not to!

Check out more photos from behind the scenes here: 

Podium Jeunes Stylistes

For videos on the designers subscribe to Podium Jeunes Stylistes YouTube channel
Stay updated and follow Podium on Facebook

xx, Q.


Set Fire To The Runway: On Aura Tout Vu S/S 2012

Paris Haute Couture Fashion Week was set aflame as the phoenix of On Aura Tout Vu rose from the ashes and descended upon us at Garage Turenne. On January 25, 2012, the Bulgarian designer duo Livia S. Stoianova and Yassen Samouilov presented their Spring-Summer Couture 2012 collection, 'High Light Fire'. The collection transcended its theme and heated the audience with incredible energy. Models were the quinntessential femmes fatales in garments blazing with blue, orange, and red flames, gleaming with thousands of Swarovski Elements crystals, and sizzling with high-drama silhouettes. We were lit up, watching a model gracefully walk the runway in a dress reminiscent of a billow of smoke, but we were dazzled when the next dress emerged from backstage literally billowing smoke. At this moment, the magnificence and genius of this collection was unmistakable. The model, also fully aware, broke character, and gave a gracious nod and humble smile knowing she was wearing an epic garment. Applause joined the epic soundtrack and then became cheers, giving me chills and highlighting the chaleureux mood of the show. 
Me and Camille at the after party
Credit: Ko Kok
When asked about the theme, 'High Light Fire', Samouilov explained the collection "is a reaction to the idea of the crisis... when all values go up in smoke. The crisis will end up coming... we need to set a fire then, so that things move... and that everyone does so at their own level." The duo told Le Monde, "the old world is a blaze, but we can rise from the ashes".

See pictures from the show and after party after the jump.


Fashion, Future, Fournié: Paris Couture Spring 2012

Fashion is ever changing, and Haute Couture is “the best laboratory [to experiment in] for fashion design”. Parisian designer, Julien Fournié, chose to enter the world of custom fitted garments not only because of the tradition of couture lying in Paris’ history, but also because of its role in the changes of fashion and his strong belief in its future. On January 24, 2012, Fournié presented his Spring-Summer 2012 couture collection, Première Extase, at the Showcase as a membre invité by the Chambre Syndicale de la Couture Parisienne
Melissa of Prête-Moi Paris! and me at the show.
© Julien Fournié

This young designer is fashion-forward, maybe even ahead of our time. While working on his collection, he collaborated with Fashion Lab, created by Dassault Systèmes, a technology incubator which enables the collection design process to transform its 2D aspects into 3D, allowing the exploration of line within the designs. “Thanks to an original online digital library, [designers can] investigate materials to visualize, study, improve a virtual prototype before they make the real-life… piece, accelerating and enhancing thus [the] creative process before they get to work on the real-life mannequin”. With such advances in the design process, “codes of Haute Couture are being redefined for generations to come”. Considering the ‘trickle down theory’ of fashion, eventually standardized sizing may not be necessary, made-to-measure garments could be more readily available at lower costs.

His collaboration with Fashion Lab is a reflection of his belief in the future of fashion and how “this field of excellence will develop” especially if it continues to include future technological improvements. Fournié and Fashion Lab worked on reproducing fabrics’ would-be reactions, using digital tools. A few kinks need to be worked out though in regards to the custom fit of the garments, which became apparent with the tugging of several hemlines.
All in all, the end result of this technological partnership birthed a line of youthful, vibrant, tropical looks from the ‘Garden of Earthly Delights’ 2.0. To the soundtrack of a thunderstorm, Fournié’s ethereal beings guided us through a rainforest. Some dresses resembled hibiscus flowers with pleated, undulating yellow and pink floral structures blooming from the shoulder and wrapping around the body. Others sprouted plastic fringe that reinforced the rainstorm soundtrack with every swish of the hip.

See photos from the show after the jump.

You might also like:

Related Posts with Thumbnails