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Isabel Marant Womenswear SS13

A gap-year fantasy brought to Paris

Admirers at Isabel Marant's SS13 show universally cooed that she is the "quintessential French designer." Her haute-hippie ethos reflects an element of French identity that is often overshadowed by visions of trim Parisian street chic. While that consensus is true, her current collection went further than Paris's student quarters or Nice's sensuality to the joyful sensibility of a woman on holiday in Ibiza or Hawaii. Tiny tops and mini-dresses were wrapped like sarongs and worn with low-slung white jean shorts. Her printed black, white and red cotton pieces contained traditional Hawaiian motifs, such as hibiscus flowers and tropical birds, but blended with a air of hippie-chick insouciance. Her accessories added significant authenticity to the attitude. Colourful beaded wood bracelets, sparkling studded belts, gladiator sandals and carefree hair demonstrated that her girls had found themselves in their island paradises. The bracelets themselves were immediately recognisable reminders of youthful escapist aspirations. It was a gap-year fantasy brought home to Paris.