Paris fashion week opens in black and white
Paris Fashion Week got off to a black-and-white start on Tuesday as a duo of Asian designers sent out Spring-Summer looks for 2012 that were monochrome in setting and style.
The global fashion pack descended on a Paris basking in gorgeous Indian Summer sunshine for the finale of the four-week ready-to-wear marathon, after a stop in Milan where the tone was firmly upbeat despite the economic gloom.
South Korean Moon Young Hee chose a light-flooded 19th-century warehouse, glass-roofed and panelled in white, to showcase a line she said fused high-tech pleats with traditional Asian tailoring, boyish cuts with ethereal draping.
Straight-cut white shift dresses and pants were criss-crossed with Mondrian-like lined patterns in maroon, blue, green and yellow, made from silk with viscose panels, and worn with or without a mannish jacket.
Hair was pinned in wispy chignons, make-up made do with touches of blue, green or red on the eyes, and shoes were flat dancer's lace-ups.
Demure, skin-covering day numbers gave way for evening to fluid organza dresses in whites and pastels, with inside-out pockets that bulged at the hips, deep scooped cowl necks, and wispy strips that sprouted from sleeves and back like angel wings.
Silky cream shirts were glammed-up with outsize ruffles down the front, and halter neck tops were fashioned from shimmery organza wound into a rope.
On a sexier note, angular-cut, high-collared black capes had cut-outs at the shoulder and deep slits at the sides, worn over bare breasts with thin black laces strapped across the body.
For the finale the designer sent out intricate pleated tops and dresses, in sculptured, bulbous shapes that rose high and wide around the neck.
"I worked a lot on the geometry, I used synthetics with silk for the first time, and I worked very hard on the pleats for dramatic effect," the designer, who has lived in Paris for two decades, told AFP afterwards.
Harry Halim chose a former metalworks as backdrop for his womenswear show, but this time it was all in black, from the warehouse walls to the models' lipstick or their thick platform-soled lace-up shoes.
The Indonesian-born, Singapore-trained designer, sent out models to the beeps, clicks and pounding drums of an industrial electro soundtrack, dressed in macrame-like capes with stringy loops and fringes, over hotpants or mini skirts in slinky black.
Skin-tight black leather trousers widened below the knee into silky see-thru flares that trailed on the floor, while masculine jackets were slashed and cut out, with thin ribbons strapped around bare torsos.
© 2011 AFP