paris autumn winter 07 08

by Timothy Hagy | photographed by Yannis Vlamos

March 4, 2007 - Working with volume and a redesigned silhouette, Alber Elbaz sent out a collection for Lanvin steeped in gloomy black though bursting occasionally into tropical tangerine and magenta and violet.

On the technical side, sleeves billowed like an inflated soufflé, at times accentuated at the shoulder and tapered to the wrists, looking for all practical purposes like an inverted drum stick.

The most charming pieces were sleeveless, as in a sleek dress flared gently at the hips, or the sumptuous white version wrapped in fox fur. For evening, one bodice was strewn with ribs of crystal.

Alber's genius is in his ability to make his clothes look like couture, almost as if they were hand stitched personally for each woman that puts a dress on. His other flare is for putting a finger on the pulse of society, looking forward like a clairvoyant to see what is coming down the path. If the darkness of the fall Lanvin collection was any indication, clouds may well be shadowing the luxury horizon. China's volatile stock market, bubbling away throughout Paris fashion week, could already be proving him right.


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