| PARIS, March 4
PARIS, March 4 Designers at Paris fashion week
mixed spectacle and showbiz to swing the fashion spotlight away
from Hollywood's Oscars, with enough zippers, fringing and
space-age chic to keep the photographers busy.
Under the ornate ceiling of the Opera Garnier on Monday,
British designer Stella McCartney presented sinewy zippers
embroidered into parkas and sweaters in a collection with a
To a thumping soundtrack, McCartney sent models down the
runway in tie-dyes, slouchy oversized wool sweaters and zippers
whose interlocking teeth undulated up the sides of garments.
But the designer seemed to lose her way with some downright
dowdy colour combinations, made more jarring by the beauty of
the gilt Belle Epoque venue.
The orange-red and russet on a sweater-skirt combo recalled
upholstery from a motel, while a blue Japanese-inspired pant
suit with obi sash and stirrup trousers puzzled.
But Stella got her groove back for the finale, showing a
splendid hooded black coat with an elegant sheen and generous
lapel, and a series of nightclub-ready dresses cut high on the
thigh that draped fringing down bodices for maximum impact.
Stella McCartney is partially owned by Kering.
STARS AMONG THE STARS
After taking inspiration from butterflies in his January
haute couture show, Jean Paul Gaultier on Saturday flew past
them into the stratosphere.
Titled "Brits in Space", his show featured a runway that
resembled an airplane aisle and models who "checked-in".
Gaultier used tubing, zippers, shiny fabric and many British
Union Jack flags in a collection that was high on the French
designer's signature theatrics but low on cohesion.
With modernistic tubing formed into hoodies, shimmering
silver jump suits, cosmonaut-type collars and vertical hair
knots that evoked some kind of alien sex toy, the show was "an
invitation to travel in space and look into the future", the
French designer said after the show.
But the astronauts must have taken the wrong turn in space,
as the show seemed to end up in London's Carnaby Street, with
striped low-slung black and white pants, tartan prints, mohawk
hairstyles and all manner of random Union Jacks.
Gaultier is owned by the private Spanish group Puig.
Fashion amid the stars found another taker in Maxime
Simoens, part of the LVMH fashion stable since last
year, with black and white dresses embroidered with shiny pearls
and crystals that would have felt at home in the Milky Way.
The 29-year-old designer used reflective silver or black
metallic squares at his show on Sunday to line shoes, boots,
belts and collars.
Backstage, even the models' instructions aimed high: "Walk
slowly, quiet face, weightless, touch the sky, stars among the
Globally, designer ready-to-wear is an 85-billion-euro
business, according to Euromonitor.
(Additional reporting by Astrid Wendlandt; Editing by Catherine