It's been less than a year since Givenchy's Artistic Director Clare Waight Keller presented her debut collection for the LVMH-owned fashion house, but she's already made quite the impression, thanks in no small part to her creation of Meghan Markle's dress for the royal wedding. While the former Chloé designer seems to be setting herself and the label up for both critical and commercial success, Givenchy suffered a huge loss in March, when its founder Hubert de Givenchy — one of France's most celebrated couturiers — passed away at the age of 91.
Shortly after the news broke, Waight Keller shared her condolences on Instagram, writing, "I am deeply saddened by the loss of a great man and artist I have had the honor to meet and get to know since my appointment at Givenchy. Not only was he one of the most influential fashion figures of our time, whose legacy still influences modern day dressing, but he also was one of the chicest most charming men I have ever met." To honor his life and legacy, the designer dedicated her Fall 2018 Haute Couture show, presented on Sunday in Paris, to Monsieur Givenchy.
Entitled "Caraman," the collection's name references the 19th Century townhouse originally built for the Duke of Caraman where Hubert de Givenchy opened his couture ateliers in 1959 — and where they remain today. (The ornate Avenue George V building also housed the first Givenchy boutique.) According to a release from the brand, the Fall 2018 couture range was meant to be "an homage to [Givenchy's] iconic creations, technique and personal lexicon," as well as "an effervescent and profound celebration of his timeless elegance and grace, imbued with Waight Keller's fresh take on the Givenchy spirit."
The 42-look collection included an impressive array of sharply tailored suiting separates and outerwear, cinched-waist dresses, intricate embroideries and embellishments (like feathers) and breezy, lightweight blouses and skirts. Waight Keller touched upon many of Givenchy's signatures from over the years, including clean lines, classic capes, riffs on the "sack dress" silhouette, boat necks and romantic bow details. Very few of the impeccably constructed evening looks would appear out of place on a red carpet, and the daywear would make a smart addition to any man or woman of power's wardrobe — a certain Duchess of Sussex, perhaps. In all, the show was a beautiful homage to the house's past and further proof that Waight Keller is poised to lead Givenchy into a bright future.
See the full Givenchy Couture Fall 2018 collection in the gallery below.