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Ins and Outs of 2005 >
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as four Interview >
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Troubled Times at Jean Paul Gaultier>
Fashion Blues >
Passing the Torch at Geoffery Beene>
Hilfiger Buys Lagerfeld >
The Legend of Winston>
All in the Mists of Time >
LVMH Sells Lacroix Couture >
Spring 2005 Carol Christian Poell >
Runway Report
Haute Couture - Spring '05 >
São Paulo Fashion Week >
Paris Men's Wear - Fall '05 >
Paris - Spring '05 >
Milan - Spring '05 >
NY - Fall '05 >
LA - Spring '05 >
SF Fashion Week >

Seeing a Naricso Rodriguez show mid week, is always akin to cleansing the palette after a rich meal. After what seems like endless runway shows (some of which are unsuccessful, uneven, or speak to the 'more is more' school of thought, with accessory pile-ons, sometimes exaggerated plays of volume and often tricky, self conscious styling), along comes a highly focused, consistent master tailor and architect who believes in perfection and execution of cut as opposed to unnecessary surface ornamentation. The best part is that his collection- which is very grown-up and always very signature, resembled nobody else's this season- no earth tones, no accessories, no furs, no gold chains, no handbags, no flats.

For fall, Narciso took inspiration as he is known to do- from his native Brazil, this time evoking the colorful costumes found in the country's Candoble religion. Building the collection around signature colors- black, white, and poppy red, he added shades of pink, raspberry, pale violet (which one normally associates with spring or summer), a touch of royal blue, then neutralized it with a bit of gray, slate, loden, ink, and espresso.

It was precisely this ability to contradict, to go for high contests that marked the collection, and in a season in which the play of masculine and feminine is one of the most obvious trends, he did it the best, going from bare, colorful, feminine, lightweight body molding dresses with architectural cutouts, to heavily constructed menswear inspired suits and overcoats. And he showed, hands down, THE best take on a traditional 3-piece suit (his version utilizes a corseted silk/wool faille black tank in place of a vest). I guarantee this will be one of the most editorialized - and copied - outfits of the season.

The collection was filled with Narciso's always amazingly constructed coats, from the pale red double face wool and wool herringbone corseted coat, to one ebony version with exposed seams. He also presented his by now trademark-shrunken boleros for both day and evening- sometimes mixing day AND night, as exemplified by the gray wool herringbone bolero shown with a pale silver metal print silk skirt. He broke up the solids by adding a white, red, black lotus print heavy silk twill knee length skirt, shown with a black chiffon tank (which had a gorgeous back), and combined caviar beads with silk wool faille for a group of long evening gowns.


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