Gareth Grows in a Grey Direction

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Gareth Pugh grew up a bit in Paris yesterday. What came down the runway at the Palais de Tokyo was undoubtedly him - tight tailoring and construction mixed with extremity and androgyny - but this time it was softer, gauzier. Cool slate tones took the place of his usual black and white palette and sheer lightweight fabrics draped his models where weighty materials once ruled. His collection was still beautiful, still out there, but more approachable, even if veiled in typical Pugh drama. The show started with copious amounts of smoke, dramatic lighting, loud music and featured massive feathered headdresses throughout. A handful of bloggers in the audience were less than thrilled; one declared it "too commercial." But those bloggers are off their rocker. Adrian Grenier and Rihanna might have sat front row, but Rick Owens and Michelle Lamy were still there countering their pop celebrity and the collection was one of Gareth's best. Of course, sitting across the aisle from Anna Dello Russo was a slight distraction, but no complaints from me. --REBECCA SUHRAWARDI AUSTIN