PARIS--At this point in Fashion Month, all I want, more than anything else, is to feel giddy about some clothes. I've spent the last three weeks nitpicking and dissecting collections, and while there have been plenty of technically superb shows this season, there haven't been a ton where I wanted things for myself. (Exceptions include: Richard Nicoll, HONOR, and Emilio de la Morena.)
However, today at Azzaro Spring 2011, I felt more than a twinge of "I want to buy that" excitement.
Instead of a traditional runway, designer Vanessa Seward holds several "mini shows" in her Paris boutique and atelier. There was a group of ten editors/buyers, and Vanessa sat in on the show. There were only two models, who alternated looks. In between each look, one of Seward's assistants would hold up other pieces that complemented what was just modeled. (Usually, the same look in a different length or colorway.) The music, a Parisian mix, was produced by Vanessa's husband. The models, both brunettes, both classically beautiful, were a lovely diversion from the hollowed-eyed waifs we tend to see on the runway.
And the clothes? The clothes were simply lovely. Seward first showed her capsule collection of more affordable wares, which included some fantastic bathing suits and a leather romper that any girl would be happy to have in her closet. (It was the first season Seward has worked with leather.) Then came the couture-quality pieces. Mostly short and relaxed in shape, Seward presented plenty of scalloped edges and puffed sleeves. A particular favorite was the navy "Dinosaur" dress, named after the row of scallops running down the spine of the frock. I was also smitten with one of the the final looks, a sparkly silver bateau top with a white tiered ruffle skirt, brought together by a black bow. This could have been tarty. Yet Seward's touch turned it sweet. Much like the rest of the collection.
I left Azzaro feeling refreshed, revived. The best kind of fashion gives you life.