Spring Summer 2014 Paris Haute Couture Scene
A Few Thoughts and Lots of Pictures
* Kim Kardashian looked absolutely beautiful – and better than I’d ever seen her look – in her Stephane Rolland silk jumpsuit and ivory cashmere tunic.
According to internet reports, in the days before the Rolland show, she and Kanye West had been to Versailles to scout wedding locations. So I wondered what she thought of the bright orange space-age bridal outfit at the Rolland show’s finale.
Then again, Rolland’s brides always come as a surprise, whether because of the model or because of a truly unique gown. In previous seasons, Rolland closed his show with the glamorously elegant 81 year-old model Carmen Dell’Orefice, Chinese superstar Fan Bing Bing and British model Yasmin Le Bon in a 110-lb. red number that took two male attendants to turn the train around when Le Bon reached the end of the runway.
Before the show’s start, as Kardashian entered the Theatre National de Chaillot, photographers formed a tight circle around her, three people deep, wildly flashing their cameras. In the brief moment after the crowd cleared, and before the bodyguards took their positions, I had the chance to say hello – we’d met at a “Dream For Future Africa” benefit – and ask her thoughts on Stephane Rolland’s designs.
Kardashian said she loved them and that she was wearing one of his ensembles, as she sat front row, her 15-carat rock flashing, alongside Gaia Weiss of “Legend of Hercules” and Spanish celebrities Blanca Suarez, Paz Vega and Rafael Amargo.
As described in my Stephane Rolland story for the Los Angeles Times, Stephane Rolland opted for yellows and oranges to predominate in his spring summer 2014 haute couture collection.
Check out the photo gallery below or in the Los Angeles Times for a look at his latest architectural designs. (Or for an idea of his signature styles, think Paula Patton in her dramatically ruffled white gown at the Golden Globe Awards.)
* Dita Von Teese had no competition for the seductive-model-of-the-season prize, (if there were such a prize), as she sashayed down the runway at Jean-Paul Gaultier’s spring summer 2014 haute couture show. Her ensemble: long black gloves, black hose and a bustier sprouting butterfly wings.
The world-famous burlesque queen proved the perfect combination for the double-themed show: butterflies and showgirls. For more details and photos, check out my Jean-Paul Gaultier story in the Los Angeles Times.
Bond girl Olga Kurlyenko and Spanish actress Paz Vega sat front row, along with familiar French faces Catherine Deneuve, Arielle Dombasle, Amanda Lear and Farida Khelfa. Since mentioning these names in my L.A. Times story, I’d been asked how a few of these women looked, so I now suggest looking in the gallery below.
* Lady Gaga turned up at Atelier Versace, minutes before organizers started the show. Not one to rush into her seat, she took time to strike a pose, before settling in beside world-famous photographer Mario Testino, Alan Ritchson of “Smallville,” French TV presenter Karine Ferri and Nolan Gerard Funk of “Awkward,” “The Canyons” and “Glee,” as a former Dalton Academy Warbler. While Gaga is the female face of Versace, Funk is the male face.
Having attended Opening Night of Testino’s photo exhibition at the PRISM Gallery in Los Angeles last year, I chatted with Testino before the show began about what a stand-out Miley Cyrus had been on the dance floor at his after-party.
Testino said he’d just photographed Cyrus for the March issue of German Vogue, which will be available in time for the Paris ready-to-wear shows. Can’t wait to see Testino’s vision of this ever-evolving talent in transition.
In the meantime, yet another rocker’s image prevailed at the Atelier Versace spring summer 2014 show, as described in my Los Angeles Times story. An homage to Grace Jones, the collection featured the designer’s signature body-revealing fashions, alive with sequins, crystals and rhinestones and this season, topped in hoods reminiscent of the great disco diva’s style.
The music, however, came courtesy of Lady Gaga, beginning with appropriately enough, her song “Donatella,” an ode to her near-twin and kindred spirit. After calling the show, “beautiful as always,” Lady Gaga’s stylist Brandon Maxwell compared his famous client to Donatella Versace.
“I’m convinced that Donatella secretly gave birth to Lady Gaga,” Maxwell said. “They’re both giving, loving and selfless, and yet they receive a lot of backlash for reasons I’m not sure of. Lady Gaga is incredible and Donatella is so talented in a massive, massive way.”
Mitchell had a hand in the famous meat dress, which has been exhibited in the Rock ‘n Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland.
* The shoes were the news at Chanel, as models bounded down the stairs and practically bounced across the floor of the “Club Cambon,” created inside the Grand Palais, highlighted by singers and a full band. For Karl Lagerfeld’s easy, breezy Chanel spring summer 2014 haute couture collection, everything from daytime outfits to elaborately glamorous evening gowns came paired with sneakers.
* Dior presented a light and lively collection, distinguished by eyelet layers, fabrics cut like honeycombs, feminine colors and a feeling of elegance. Designed by Raf Simons, the spring summer 2014 haute couture show took place at the Rodin Museum, inside an ingenious cave-like construction where the Flintstones would have felt right at home.
* Schiaparelli has returned after a sixty year absence, infused – by designer Marco Zanini – with an even greater sense of humor and some of the most intricate workmanship seen this season.
Taking place at the Hotel d’Evreux on the historic Place Vendome, the spring summer 2014 haute couture collection came complete with at-times-outrageous hats by English milliner Stephen Jones and fun accessories by French costume jewelry designer Gripoix.
* Giorgio Armani’s “One Night Only” attracted an international array of stars for the Giorgio Armani Privé spring summer 2014 haute couture show, a museum-quality exhibition of Armani’s historic fashions and a seated-and-placed dinner for nearly 500 VIP guests. (I find it hard enough to properly place 10 guests at a single table; I can’t imagine trying to figure out who goes where when nearly 500 VIPs are involved.)
Here, the guest list at the Palais de Tokyo included Roberta Armani, Chinese actress Zivi Zhang, Italian actress Claudia Cardinale, French actresses Sophie Marceau and Isabelle Huppert, Paloma Fath, Tallulah Harlech, model Audrey Marnay and Princess Caroline of Monaco’s youngest son Pierre Casiraghi and his girlfriend Beatrice Borromeo, who called the collection, “amazing.”
As mentioned in my Los Angeles Times story, actress Kristin Scott Thomas remarked on the sheerness of the fabrics that twinkled with crystals, rhinestones, sequins and other light-catching embellishments.
“I almost wept,” she said after the show, all created of subtle shades of blue, ranging from gray-blue to midnight.
As an aside, as Cate Blanchett looked no less than stunning in her black lace Giorgio Armani gown at the Golden Globes. So we’re now curious to see if she’ll pick up an Oscar in one of these blue numbers for her brilliant performance in “Blue Jasmine.”
While we didn’t see Blanchett in Paris for the shows, her presence still prevailed, as her image towered over the road to Charles de Gaulle Airport on a giant billboard advertising this brand.
Photos of the collection can be found in the gallery below or accompanying my L.A. Times story.
* Red carpet master Elie Saab demonstrated his expertise with his collection of glittering gowns in a floral bouquet of spring shades, along with classic black.
Saab has been responsible for some of the most memorable gowns each awards season, ever since Halle Berry took home the 2002 Oscar in Saab’s cranberry gown with its sheer appliquéd top. Judging from the Elie Saab spring summer 2014 haute couture show, presented at the Theatre National de Chaillot, this year’s creations are likely to show up at the 2014 Oscars, too.
As recounted in my story for the Los Angeles Times, a galaxy of stars have chosen Saab’s gowns for awards shows. The roll call now includes Katy Perry, Emma Stone, Beyoncé, Lea Michele, Taylor Swift, Emily Blunt, Mila Kunis, Rihanna, Angelina Jolie, Amy Adams, Rose Byrne and Nina Dobrev.
Already since 2014 began, adding to the list are Helen Mirren, Iggy Azalea, Julia Roberts, Lupita Nyong’o of “12 Years a Slave,” Taissa Farmiga of “The Bling Ring,” and Margot Robbie of “The Wolf of Wall Street.”
* On Aura Tout Vu lit up the runway – literally – when the models returned into the darkened salon at a Paris Town Hall, only this time with portions of the On Aura Tout Vu spring summer 2014 haute couture fashions electrified. Always imaginative, designers Livia Stoianova, Yassen Samouilov and Andre de sa Pessoa once again proved the value of their label’s name, which roughly translates as “You think you’ve seen it all.” (Last year, they created the line from iridescent beetle wings.)
Top photo: From left, Gaia Weiss of “Legend of Hercules,” Kim Kardashian and Spanish celebrities Blanca Suarez, Paz Vega and Rafael Amargo front row at the Stephane Rolland spring summer 2014 haute couture collection, part of the spring summer 2014 Paris haute couture scene (photo: SocietyNewsLA.com)
Second photo: Dita Von Teese models an haute couture bustier, sprouting butterfly wings, at the Jean-Paul Gaultier spring summer 2014 haute couture show, spicing up the spring summer 2014 Paris haute couture scene (photo: courtesy of Jean-Paul Gaultier Paris)
Third photo: From left, Lady Gaga, photographer Mario Testino, Alan Ritchson of “Smallville,” French TV presenter Karine Ferri and Nolan Gerard Funk of “Awkward,” front row at the Atelier Versace spring summer 2014 collection, part of the spring summer 2014 Paris haute couture scene (photo, courtesy of Atelier Versace)
Fourth photo: A light and lively collection from Dior for spring summer 2014 haute couture, taking place inside a cave-like contraction that would make Fred and Wilma feel right at home, part of the spring summer 2014 Paris haute couture scene (photo: SocietyNewsLA.com)
Fifth photo: Kristin Scott Thomas and Giorgio Armani at “One Night Only,” the party of the week, done in conjunction with the Giorgio Armani Privé spring summer 2014 collection, part of the spring summer 2014 Paris haute couture scene (photo, courtesy of Giorgio Armani Privé)
Sixth photo: Elie Saab presented a spring summer 2014 haute couture collection of gowns, destined for the red carpet, part of the spring summer 2014 Paris haute couture scene (photo, courtesy of Elie Saab)
Seventh photo: From the all blue Giorgio Armani Privé spring summer 2014 haute couture collection, ranging in color from light grey blues to deep midnight blues (photo, courtesy of Giorgio Armani Privé)
Eighth photo: From the electrified On Aura Tout Vu spring summer 2014 haute couture collection, which lit up at their finale, part of the spring summer 2014 Paris haute couture scene (photo: SocietyNewsLA.com)
ALSO IN SOCIETY NEWS L.A.
Spring Summer 2014 Paris Haute Couture Scene
Published Feb. 2, 2014 – Ellen Olivier, Society News LA