Paris Couture Week Fall Winter 2019: Haute couture gets a casual twist
Pared-down, everyday and casual - aren’t words one usually associates with the rarefied world of haute couture. However, over the last five years, couture has become a mixed buffet comprising day time pantsuits, mannish shorts, work blazers and sporty bombers. Appealing to a diverse and evasive sartorial palette of the millennial couture client, couturiers offer a shrewdly-curated menu of mix and match separates as opposed to occasion-specific ballgowns.
The recently-concluded Paris Couture Week Fall Winter 2019 shows had Chanel sending out models dressed as a chic librarian in long and lean suits and Maria Grazia Chiuri at Christian Dior recreating bar silhouettes without any padding. Alexandre Vauthier showcased a trench coat and Ronald Van Der Kemp sent out a pair of patchworked denims.
Designer Falguni Peacock observes, “Gone is the OTT glamour of John Galliano’s Dior days. Today, you don’t have to wait for a ball to wear couture. You team a jacket with a pair of shorts and you’re good to go and you could even rock that jacket after a year. Today’s millennial clients have a relaxed approach to clothing and they like everything to be deconstructed. Also, you never feel out of place in a pantsuit and yet it makes you stand out.”
While on one hand, you have an Iris Van Herpen showcasing gravity-defying, cutting edge designs, and then there’s Pierpaolo Piccioli at Valentino seducing you with delicious day time separates. Couturier Suneet Varma believes that today couture is steeped in the spirit of adventure, travel and exploration. “The grand couture in the classic French style was all about being poised and being seen, but didn’t offer much movement. However, today couture has become synonymous with adventure. Everybody has a travel bucket list and the transformative power of couture and technology should be able to complement it,” says Suneet.
Today’s nomad bride may not want a traditional wedding in Udaipur and may prefer a destination wedding in Bali with her entourage of bridesmaids. Designer Aniket Satam observes, “The impeccably tailored jacket suits at Chanel and Dior signify that the modern consumer is opting for more versatile, functional and relevant fashion over exaggerated, in your face, one-time-wear couture.”
Think investment pieces with a repeat value, comfort and functionality. Hence once sees couture denims, embellished trucker sweatshirt having a conversation with a confectionery ballgowns on the same runway.
Designer Nachiket Barve aptly sums up the pret-couture osmosis as, “The pret has become couture in a way with a lot of detailing going on and the lines between the two have blurred.”