US la­bels make Paris de­but on haute cou­ture catwalks

Kuwait Times - - LIFESTYLE -

Two high-end Amer­i­can la­bels will make their Paris haute cou­ture debuts to­day in a week when the French cap­i­tal pays trib­ute to two of fash­ion's leg­ends. New York-based Proenza Schouler and Cal­i­for­nian house Ro­darte-who nor­mally present their col­lec­tions at New York fash­ion week-have been in­vited into the elite haute cou­ture fold, which shows only in Paris. Their de­but as guest mem­bers comes as Chanel's vet­eran mae­stro Karl Lager­feld will be given the Grand Ver­meil medal, the high­est honor the city of Paris can be­stow, and a ma­jor new ex­hi­bi­tion opens about Chris­tian Dior.

The Bel­gium la­bel A.F. Van­de­vorst and Hol­land's Ron­ald van der Kemp have also been in­vited to show on the haute cou­ture catwalks for first time along­side French brand Az­zaro. Only 15 fash­ion houses in­clud­ing Chanel, Chris­tian Dior, Jean Paul Gaultier, Mai­son Margiela and Gi­ambat­tista Valli have the right to call their work haute cou­ture. Their entirely hand­made cre­ations, which can cost tens of thou­sands of eu­ros (dol­lars) for a sin­gle piece, are worn by some of the rich­est and most pow­er­ful women in the world. French haute cou­ture de­signer Julien Fournie-whose clients in­clude roy­alty-said he wel­comed the in­clu­sion of the Amer­i­can brands, which are best known for dress­ing Hol­ly­wood stars. "Ev­ery­one has the right to come to Paris to mea­sure them­selves against the greats. All the bet­ter (that) the Amer­i­cans come and we will see what they can do," he added.

Karl Lager­feld hon­ored

Los An­ge­les-based Ro­darte, run by sis­ters Kate and Laura Mul­leavy, have dressed pop star Katy Perry and made head­lines with their 2014 "Star Wars" dresses which car­ried images of Luke Sky­walker and ro­bot R2-D2. They de­signed the cos­tumes for the bal­let movie "Black Swan", and its star Natalie Port­man wore one of their gowns to pick up her Os­car for best ac­tress in 2011. Her hus­band French chore­og­ra­pher Ben­jamin Millepied has worked with the sis­ters on a num­ber of his bal­let pro­duc­tions. Proenza Schouler de­sign­ers Lazaro Her­nan­dez and Jack McCol­lough will show their spring sum­mer ready to wear line they would have shown in New York in Septem­ber, al­low­ing them to de­liver it to shops two months ahead of the com­pe­ti­tion.

The haute cou­ture shows will also see newly ap­pointed French de­signer Maxime Si­moens take his first bow at Az­zaro, which was founded half a cen­tury ago by the Ital­ian Loris Az­zaro. But the big set-piece events of the week will as ever be the of­ten spec­tac­u­lar Dior and Chanel shows. Maria Grazia Chi­uri will present her se­cond cou­ture col­lec­tion for Dior on Mon­day which will be fol­lowed by the open­ing of a new ex­hi­bi­tion ded­i­cated to the house's founder Chris­tian Dior at the city's mu­seum of dec­o­ra­tive arts. The show, "Chris­tian Dior: De­signer of Dreams", which will run un­til Jan­uary 2018, traces the his­tory of the brand from Dior's in­ven­tion of the "New Look" af­ter World War II right up to Chi­uri, who be­came its first fe­male artis­tic di­rec­tor last July.

And 83-year-old Lager­feld, known as the "kaiser" for his mas­tery of the fash­ion world, will be pre­sented with the Grand Ver­meil medal on Tues­day af­ter Chanel's show at the Grand Palais by the mayor of the French cap­i­tal, Anne Hi­dalgo. — AFP

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