Traditionally, the "couturier" does not have to consider commercial constraints while putting together their "made to order" creations, in terms of production, market appeal, expense. But they do have to align themselves with the lifestyles of the super wealthy clients who buy this type of product. That client has changed over the years. She is more concerned about her body than her predecessor and less interested in using fashion to exert her social status. This is a woman with a supercharged lifestyle and consequently, shows a preference for more easy to wear silhouettes.
Each season I swear this will be the last time I will do a couture report because I feel it is no longer relevant. At its best, the catwalk resembles a hit parade of former "greatest looks" watered down for a customer who does not fully understand the art. At its worse, it screams "wannebe fashion student." So why am I still here? As long as there are a few special dresses that help me answer the question, "Why haute couture in 2016," I will stick with it!"
Out of the Woods
All That Jazz
Long and lean or short and sassy, these are glammed up looks reminiscent of the 1920's and 30's Art Deco era. In particular, we like the sleekness of long looks. But we also liked all the detailing (embroidery, appliques, feathers and fur) emploied in the shorter dresses.
Made to Move Couture
The 17 year old in me loves fringe! All the dresses above except for the last one can be made with trim! Start with a basic foundation (or sheath dress) and add the fringe.
While on the subject of fringe...I was particularly intrigued by this Versace dress because it's the first I've ever seen that is belted. I started out with a silver, sheath dress (with darts) and some 4-inch (10cm) silver fringe. (For this dress, I only needed about 10" (26cm) of trim, though most stores insist on a 1 yard (1 meter) minimum.) I only used four rows of fringe. If you use more, the doll looks as though she's wearing a hair dress (remember Thing from Adam's Family?), so in this case, less is better. When finished, I cut the dress to the desired length. The belt is made from silver leather with a tiny strip of black ribbon glued to the middle. (It closes in the back with Velcro). I also added a leather band to the top of the dress, thus forming a collar.
Take a Bow
There was a time when it seemed that no couture season was complete without dresses decorated with bows. While I wasn't a huge fan of women wrapped like Christmas packages, I do like these bows. A length of ribbon wraps around the body then is looped into a serious part of the style!
A simple one shoulder sheath and a major velvet bow...that's all Dorian needs to make a grand entrance!
The secret to achieving this look is to do the dress in two pieces: a corset and a skirt. The bow adds a super girly look to an otherwise edgy style.
Winter Grecian Goddess
Belle of the Ball
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