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Couture Trends – SS 2018


The fantastical, dreamy and always awe-inspiring artisanal spectacles from the haute couture collections represent the incredible skill that is employed by the industry’s elite. ‘Draw-dropping’, ‘otherworldly’, ‘exquisite’ and ‘incredible’ are just some words that are sure-fire descriptions you can rely on hearing in relation to the stunning style event, and it seems the Spring/Summer 2018 offerings proved to be no exception.

A structural aesthetic with an obligatory etherealness made a melodramatic presence, along with tumbling tiers of material and a flurry of frivolous feathers. These were the fundamental looks to note from the season that once again provided fashion editors with a sense of pure and utter escapism.

Structural albeit Ethereal 

It is not uncommon to see looks of fluidity and femininity emerge from couture, and although this was still the case elsewhere, a number of garments imbued an almost architectural essence that surely contributed to the overall wow factor.

Giambattista Valli whose couture’s are synonymous with frothy fairytale confections exhibited gowns with tiered empire waists and exaggerated silhouettes, which made for subtly structured aesthetics. Iris van Herpen’s technically impressive creations reflected an architectural vision that radiated a theatrical, sci-fi territory. Givenchy illustrated an air of structural elegance through its sophisticated gowns, as did Celia Kritharioti, with her full and stiffened 50s-inspired skirts. The best representation of this trend arrived from Stephane Rolland – a structured, deep V mini with amplified, grandiose shoulders that resembled wings, rendered in an elegant silk.

Tiers of Fabric 

Lavish layers of fabric contribute to the overall dreamy vision of couture and this season there were bountiful lashings of tumbling tiers that were seen on many gowns from all manner of designers.

Opulent embellishments were decorated onto tiered waist peplums at Valentino; Giambattista Valli once again illustrated his signature layering of material on voluminous gowns; plentiful helpings of diaphanous fabrics were tired on tulip skirts at Schiaparelli, and a graduating colour scheme decorated a tumbling tiered floor-length skirt at Givenchy. A sky blue train of frothy tulle cascaded down the back of a mini dress at Celia Kritharioti and Alexis Mabille’s golden mermaid-style gown captivated onlookers.

Frivolous Feathers 

What better embellishment to transport one into the lavish and glamorous world of couture than feathers? Frivolous flurries of feathers decorated an army of stunning dresses, coats and jumpsuits from almost every industry influencer, and then some.

Pink fly-away feathers adorned the cuffs and necklines of embellished gossamer gowns at Elie Saab; mini dresses were covered head-to-toe in marabou feathers at Giorgio Armani Privé; monochrome carnations decorated column dresses at Ralph & Russo with the couture house also bejewelling pretty pastel feathers in pink on their brocade, royalty-worthy gowns. Additionally, Givenchy’s voluminous feathered barolo was the perfect addition to offset a black floor-length gown. Simply divine!

Words by Kate Farley

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