As we entered the Palais D’Iena, we noted that the Auguste Rerret-designed space was transformed by AMO (part of Rem Koolhaas’ OMA company) into a winding set and seating arrangement in cherry wood. For the first time, the rotunda of the building was also used where a curtain showing a video stream of the show along with imagery of the building layered on top. Some of the showgoers were seated in this hemicycle where French government normally make important decisions on economic affairs. Instead we’d be deciding the fate of Miuccia’s closing statement for the season. It was an elaborate setting for a show that would leave us thinking of the season’s overall theme of the breaking down of vaulted ideals of elegance. Miuccia summed it up best in the opening looks of mid-century chic skirts and jackets in dark denim, a fabric we associate with teen looks of our youth. They were often paired with deliberately ill-fitting bra tops that looked bent out of shape. Crushed fabrics and tie dye spirals that again harked back to slubby casual t-shirts were here re-appropriated and used in jackets, skirts and dresses that were more Rive Gauche 1962 than 90s grunge. The fur stoles printed with tie dye circles and secretary glasses were revived from Miuccia’s past collections and worn with a insouciance that suited this slightly jarring interpretation of elegant attire. Opera gloves weren’t pulled all the way up and even the ladylike handbags were flattened and given odd proportions. The oversized duchesse satin opera coats were also rumpled and spilt with inky stains. When it got to the feet, it was a also a story of two opposites – pointy slingbacks versus bejewelled flat sandals. It was a rebellious teenager and her bygone glamorous mother from yesteryear jostling to outdo each other. This was Miuccia playing her favourite game of ugly-chic again only the verdict of the audience was definitely more chic than ugly.
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