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"As you know, Thom likes to tell a story... It's going to be a long story — and you know he loooves his long stories..."

That's what Gwendoline Christie, dressed in a duchess silk satin embroidered dressing gown, told the audience gathered at the Grand Palais for Thom Browne's Spring 2023 show Monday. Except, on the runway, she was "Charming," and she was setting the stage for the famously theatrical designer's rendition of a classic tale: that of Cinderella. (The seven-foot sparkling "glass" heel at the end of the runway should've been a giveaway.)

The collection opens with a series of silk taffeta opera coats in an array of colors, each bearing a varsity number across the back. Then, we meet our "Cindy": Emmy-nominated actor Michaela Jaé Rodriguez, wearing white. 

Over the course of the show, we also saw her stepmother and stepsisters (in half-draped silk taffeta polka-dot dresses and punky hair), their cat (in a satin mini skirt and duchess jacket with yarn-ball embroidery), the mice (in off-the-shoulder, bow-decked mini dresses), the fairy godmother and her entourage (in hand-knit jackets and pleated poodle skirts). 

Like all of the brand's work, Thom Browne's version of this fairy tale is rooted in sharp tailoring and precision, juxtaposed with imaginative details and a playfulness that elevates clothing into storytelling. The Spring 2023 looks are literally and figuratively layered: The more you stare, the more you discover — like how underwear peeks out from the trousers in the back or how some models were wearing smocked tulle bodysuits underneath.

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But back to the story! Cindy, in a gold-embroidered opera coat with navy satin tails, dances her way up the runway to Charming, before stepping inside the giant shoe. There, she transforms "into the most true version of herself," the brand explains in the show notes: wearing a cropped white shirt, grey trousers and Thom Browne-branded underwear.

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And off she goes, in a pink tulle Cadillac carriage, as the rest of the characters dance together, and as Christie's Charming reminds us: "In Thom Browne's world, all girls and all boys fit inside the shoe."

See the full Thom Browne Spring 2023 collection in the gallery below.

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