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Lanvin S/S 09

Alber Elbaz gives women what they want with a collection that was half polished and half reckless.

"We always want to create clothes that are emotional" and it is with this desire and sensitivity towards the female psyche that Alber Elbaz has pulled another brilliant collection out of the bag. Trying to please the entire female population was never going to be an easy task but Elbaz rose to the challenge. The first half of the show was full of pure and classic Lanvin-isms; the voluminous tops, the easy one-shoulder, the simple dresses with hidden details, the jewel colours and those fabrics that are dying to be touched (cloque, satin, gazar). You began feeling like it was adhering to what the current climate was dictating, which is sombriety, hence the numerous ensembles in black that were never going to date or fade away. Towards the end of the show, suddenly Elbaz made a swift turn. We should have guessed what was going to happen when the shoes all along were adorned with gemstones and glinted at a more indulgent portion of the show. As soon as the pale pink rhinestone covered dress and the blue leopard one shouldered number along with gem encrusted sunglasses appeared, we knew that the future wasn't going to be a bleak one and that we all have the right to escape into a world where paillette flower embroidery, chunky jewels on shoes and earrings and brightly coloured fringe lurex were still okay to be flaunted and showed off to all and sundry. Elbaz understands the need to be both practical and impractical, realistic and frivolous, sensible and indulgent and it is with this show that he demonstrated this.