Paris Haute Couture Week Spring ‘23
Last week, haute couture returned to the Paris runways. Spring ‘23 saw a lot of action, and it seems couture is reclaiming its title as the most exciting installment of fashion month. From an opinion-dividing opener by Shiaparelli, including viral FROW looks, to Viktor and Rolf literally turning fashion on its head — let’s dive into Glossi Mag’s highlights.
Of course, we have to kick off with Daniel Rosenberry’s internet-breaking show. Schiaparelli’s Spring ‘23 couture collection displayed handcraft unlike any other. The fake taxidermy lion, leopard and wolf heads bursting from evening gowns and jackets were individually hand-molded and embellished. The collection was inspired by Inferno of Dante’s Divine Comedy, with the lion, leopard and wolf representing pride, lust and avarice. Of course, true to Schiaparelli’s origins of shock and awe in the Elsa days, the faux animals caused a stir on social media. Surprisingly for some, PETA has gone on to praise the collection though.
Unfortunately the viral heads and Doja Cat’s surreal front-row look distracted from some truly incredible artistry. Glass-embellished chest pieces obscuring the face, emulating the appearance of a peacock and a precious shell, plus impeccable tailoring with extreme silhouettes did not get the attention they deserved.
Always a ferociously joyful display of haute couture, Giambattista Valli did not disappoint this season. Valli’s vision for Spring ‘23 was to create a “moment of relaxed and peaceful effortlessness”. Floating tulle clouds of pastel pinks, blues, orange and turquoise perfectly depicted the designer’s Beverly Hills inspiration
Old-school Hollywood silhouettes were presented in the form of knotted and draped siren dresses and decadent opera coats topped off more streamlined gowns. A number of these looks will most certainly be taken to the red carpet come awards season.
Vauthier’s Spring ‘23 RTW collection debuted in a former state bunker and record company headquarters. For couture, the designer wanted to go all in and add a little elegance. As always, the label presented explosive looks with standouts teal sequin suiting, hot pink flounces, neon faux fur and silver feather-esque dresses.
Hand-cut mirror-lacquered asymmetrical underskirts, artful draping and illusive items (hint: those extra large velvet puff sleeves are actually gloves) added a couture element to Vauthier’s signature “mini” style. While, at a glance, the collection doesn’t scream couture, the looks are subtle displays of more complicated construction.
Upcoming trend alert: couture in the club. For Spring ‘23 Pierpaolo Piccioli served us nightclub eleganza. Always looking to make a statement with his couture work, Piccioli’s ‘Valentino Le Club Couture’ collection is about “showing this freedom of being whoever you want to be”.
Tiny sequin shorts, sheer exposure, tuxedo-inspired designs and a whole lot of feathers, this collection was inspired by iconic 1980’s clubs from Studio 54 to London’s New Romantic Blitz Club. Vibrant men’s suiting also had a place in the show, coming down the runway in electric shades of green, yellow and blue, and coats embroidered with metallic beading.
Some designers subtly integrate their inspiration into a collection. Not our Giorgio. This season’s couture collection was inspired by harlequins, and everything from the hair accessories through to the diagonal checked runway decor screamed it. Naturally the looks also embodied this with the pastel diamonds donned on dresses, trousers, tops and adorable Pierrot ruffs. Art-deco jazz also seemed to have an influence in some of the looks.
Shimmering detailing, such as crystal embroidery and metallic leather patchwork, and more traditional gown styles added the awards season touch Armani never forgets.
Another award season hero, Elie Saab certainly delivered for its celebrity partners this Spring ‘23. Intricate lace, glowing golden gowns, meticulous crystal and pearl embellishments, and never-ending trains all made an appearance on the catwalk.
Saab wanted this Spring ‘23 couture collection to convey a “regal feel”. Every Elie Saab collection screams royalty, but this one truly is majestic with delicate appliqué opera coats, oversized silk bows, heart-shaped bodices and corsets, and perfected peplums.
Viktor & Rolf
Entitled ‘Late Stage Capitalism Waltz’, this surrealist collection was made to be memed. Viktor Horsting and Rolf Snoeren truly trolled us this season, and we loved it. The Spring collection featured traditional Cinderella-esque ball gowns in dreamy powder pastel hues. Some, however, took an unexpected twist.
Through the use of inverted 3D printed bodices, the tulle dresses were showcased upside down, floating in front of the body and at perpendicular angles. One of the upside down looks completely covered the model’s face (it takes serious fashion week skills to get guided down the catwalk through an earpiece). “It’s an absurd take on the stereotype of a couture ball gown” said Snoeren.
Need some more couture? Take a trip down memory lane and read Paris Haute Couture Spring ‘22.