High in colour and full of magic, opulence and elegance, today’s haute couture shows have evolved into fashion spectacles that are imaginative and eye-catching, giving online audiences all around the world a glimpse into a dreamlike and creative world.
This year, haute couture pushes the boundaries of our imagination with a gothic fairy tale, the golden ratio and the childhood nostalgia for the Paris of the Middle East in the 50s and 60s. Take a seat in the first row and enjoy the best haute couture shows of 2024.
A GOTHIC FAIRY TALE COME TO LIFE
Simone Rocha, guest couturier for Jean Paul Gaultier’s Spring/Summer 2024 haute couture show, dazzled the fashion world with her vision of ethereal femininity combined with the provocative sensuality of Gaultier. There were nods to the French iconic couturier with the rose, which she seamed into dresses, the corsetry and the sailor hats.
The talented 37-year-old fashion Irish designer did not only dive into the Gaultier archives in Paris, she also had access to Queen Victoria’s archives in London. She was particularly inspired by the 19th-century royal’s mourning dress. “I was really interested in preserved garments and memories,” she said in an interview with Harper’s Bazaar.
A BRILLIANT COUP DE THEATRE
Under Pont Alexandre III in Paris, bathed in the light of the first full moon of the year, Creative Director John Galliano captures a moment in time: a walk through the underbelly of Paris, offline.
The Artisanal Collection paints a picture of the practices and occurrences that shape the character reflected within our dress.
THE GOLDEN RATIO
Lebanese couturier Tony Ward celebrates 10 years of fashion shows in Paris. The Golden Ratio, the Spring/Summer 2024 couture collection he presented at the Palais de Tokyo in Paris, is an ode to a force that brings us all together: a ratio that shapes the chaotic beauty we witness around us.
Geometrical patterns translated through intricate embroideries, nature’s divine allure, dancing threads replicating the human harmony, explosions of shapes unified into three-dimensional artwork, intersection of different forms & volumes, statement Edwardian sleeves, layers of un-matched materials.
A TRIBUTE TO THE FORMER PARIS OF THE MIDDLE EAST
The Georges Hobeika Haute Couture collection Spring/Summer 2024 is a tribute to the Arab world, especially the glamour and beauty of Middle Eastern women as well as the joyful and creative aspects of the region’s culture. Elements of childhood nostalgia meld with the spirit of the 50s, 60s and 70s to echo the joie de vivre of the eras’ parties, when Beirut was called Paris of the Middle East.
Silhouettes are poised and elegant, the models impeccably coiffed, as if stepping out of the salon on their way to a party. This sense of fun and happiness is evident not only in a vibrant colour palette in shades of red, green, pink, purple and blue, but also in light-hearted inspirations from Arabian culture. The quintessential coffee cup, central to Lebanese social occasions, is reinvented as an earring, while the swirls of its grains – used to predict good fortune – are worked as prints and motifs across flawless column dresses. Tapestry and rugs are also a key feature, whether as dresses or skirts, they ingeniously wrap the models’ body. Also, fringed borders and intricate details reflect the oriental feel on shoes and bags.
Valentino Le Salon Haute Couture Spring/Summer 2024 collection is deeply rooted in modern life. For Creative Director Pierpaolo Piccioli, the salon represents both a return and a departure – simultaneously an honouring of tradition and a new proposal. The Salon here is not a stage, but rather a cultural milieu, to valorise craft, to celebrate the act of creation. It is a place to bear witness to beauty. It is the heart of Haute Couture
AN ANCIENT INDIAN JOURNEY FROM DARKNESS TO LIGHT
Aarohanam, the title chosen by Indian couturier Gaurav Gupta for his new collection, is a Sanskrit word with a deep spiritual significance, It marks the journey of a being from the gross to the subtle, from solid to sublime, from darkness to light.
Much like the movement of a snake’s journey as it sheds old skin to emerge anew, reborn. It is reflective of the concept of kundalini, the coiled snake that rests dormant at the base of our spines till it is awakened by the power of deep meditation and intent. That is when the curtain of illusion lifts, the chakras open and the flame ignites
The flame reveals colours that weave the collection together. Black is a metaphor for the absolute nothingness of being. Agni orange reflects the rising of a flame. Sand represents light, reflection. The ether blue is indicative of the infinity that ascension brings.
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