PARIS: Boundless ideas peppered with 1980s fun was the expansive spirit behind Stella McCartney’s accomplished collection at Paris Fashion Week that had celebrities on the front row tapping their feet to the thumping music.
Here are some highlights of Monday’s spring-summer 2018 Paris Fashion Week shows:
STELLA MCCARTNEY TAKES ON THE ’80S
British-American designer McCartney slashed a bubblegum pink disco-debutante dress in taffeta at the bottom — giving it a surreal shrunken effect — and paired it with billowing pants that make the model’s legs disappear.
It was deceptively simple, like many of the 39 looks in the fastidiously-constructed display Monday in Paris. A loose green silk gown was jazzed up with a visually-kinetic African print of microphone and all held in place by a single shoulder ruffle.
Elsewhere, the unadulterated — and intentionally — bad taste of the ’80s was in vogue.
An over-dyed washed jumpsuit, in a denim series, came in acid green that gave one particular guest a feeling of deja-vu.
“There were some throwbacks to me, to the ’80s. Acid green and yellow denim. I’m sure I had a jacket that color,” said singer Kylie Minogue, 49, who first found fame in that decade of fashion excess.
GIAMBATTISTA VALLI’S TOP AND BOTTOM
Could Italian couturier Giambattista Valli be fashion’s answer to a body-sawing magician?
Valli created a fun spring collection which, in myriad looks, spliced the body in two from the top to the bottom with distinct or contrasting styles.
The buttoned-up feel of a knitted gray scholastic tank top and striped shirt contrasted stylishly with a black sheer skirt that exposed the leg, adult-style. Valli also cleverly used an exposed midriff as a border separating a floral black and gray print vest top from the silken ochre skirt beneath, with a sensual black lace underskirt peeping out.
The spliced-musing was only part of the show that blossomed into the flower-loving designer’s signature floral printed silk gowns. And the skirt ruffles that Valli fashioned higher at the front beautifully encased the models’ legs in an oval shape like a showpiece.
RARE APPEARANCE BY SEINFELD
Comedian Jerry Seinfeld, a relative stranger to the fashion industry, found time to fly in to Paris for the Stella McCartney show.
The comedian, who’s been friends with the fashion designer for several years, joked that he might use the foibles of the industry as new material for his comedy.
“Of course, I can use anything I want. Always taking notes,” he told The Associated Press.
The 63-year-old rocked the front row in a dapper suit jacket and stylish glasses, alongside Minogue, British singer Ellie Goulding and the U.S. singing group Haim.
Seinfeld, who said he’s “always busy,” said he was happy to open up his archives for Netflix’s one-hour special called “Jerry before Seinfeld.”
“People are enjoying it, so it’s a lot of fun,” he said. “It’s my first time on this platform.”
IRVING PENN CELEBRATED
Pioneering American fashion photographer Irving Penn is the subject of a new retrospective at Paris’ Grand Palais.
Vogue Paris editor Emmanuelle Alt turned out on the red carpet Sunday night for a private VIP viewing of the exhibit.
Penn, who died at 92 in 2009, found fame for his celebrity portraits that graced the pages of Vogue magazine from 1943 right up until August of the year he died.
But as celebrity guests — who included Minogue, Robin Wright, Naomi Campbell and Jean Paul Gaultier — discovered, Penn’s expansive eye went well beyond the industry. The exhibit shows how Penn meticulously studied art to perfect his austere lighting.
He used that on a wide range of subjects, including an ethnographic photographic series taken in modern-day Benin. In addition, close-ups of objects such as cigarette butts showed an emotional engagement to the perils of smoking and a modernist approach to his art.