At the couture shows, one expects flair and drama. Beauty is an important part of any runway show, but it's taken to a different level in couture. It's either masterfully understated to let the clothes shine, or a literal extension of the couture pieces themselves.
The Spring 2011 couture shows delivered flair in abundance. Yes, there were quiet and pretty moments, like at Elie Saab and
Alexis Mabille: The long shiny princess braids intertwined with vines and roses sounds very twee, but it looked stunning with the simple makeup and ethereal gowns. (Hair by Odile Gilbert.)
Christian Dior: The hair and makeup at
Armani Privé: You couldn’t even see the models’ hair and eyes thanks to Philip Treacy’s saucer hats, so that left lips front and center.
Now, I’ve been on record saying I hate purple. Perhaps a change of heart is in order. Linda Cantello painted lips a vibrant purple, then topped it all off by affixing a blue violet gem to one edge of the lower lip. You can do this look in real life. Really.
Franck Sorbier: Dreadlocks usually have an ick factor, but they were elevated to couture status at Sorbier’s show. The models’ dreads were rolled into cinnamon bun updos and half-up-half-down hair. Traditional formal hair styles done with a big nasty twist. It worked.
Maurizio Galante: A prime example of the makeup becoming one with the clothes. Each model at Galante had colorful washes applied to her face and legs to coordinate with the clothes, or geometric prints or zigzags painted onto her bare legs and torso. Model as canvas.