Sunday, March 08, 2009

Autumn in Paris ... Balenciaga F/W 09 -10

The insouciance and the je ne sais quoi of Jennifer Connolly when she modelled for Balenciaga’s spring/summer 2008 collection are virtually unparalleled.

So stunning the entire campaign was that it still remains fresh in my mind till now. Not to mention the cutting edge knee-high gladiator sandals too, as seen on Rihanna and mon ami meilleur Camelia.

For the upcoming fall/winter lineup, designer Nicholas Ghesquière is utilizing Paris in a whole, from the style right down to its unmatched romance and feel into Balenciaga’s ready-to-wear collection.

Staged at the infamous Hotel de Crillon to a bevy of fashion head honchos and buyers alike, the presentation started with an elegant ensemble of knit top in grey noise and intricately draped around short skirt. The skirt, which is meticulously detailed features classy scallop drapes falling nicely on both sides of the mannequin’s hip with two-toned criss-cross waists.

Similar style in same proportion and a slight twist of technique were also featured on few other ensembles with austere bright hues. I also noticed that Ghesquière did add a little touch of volume on the shoulders and the jackets’ necklines seemed to be tightly pulled downwards, tucked inside the draped skirts. However, the classic lacy bandeau worn underneath the tops looks too demure and quite lacklustre. In fact, the ensembles themselves have literally outshone that trendy piece if I’m not mistaken.

Apart from the short knee-length skirts, the pantsuits too are well-crafted in the same manner as the skirt ensembles. Here’s an interesting part: the upper half of the suit is crisply tailored to perfection while the lower half of it adopts draping technique.

So are the pants, which looked more like a liquid long skirt split into half. Moreover, the usage of ribbons around the waistlines helps accentuating the wearers’ feminine side. But obviously, the skirts, especially the piped tulip one wore with a simple white plunging necked shirt, have won my “ensemble of my choice” vote.

Jumping to the printed side, the flower prints are not disappointing either. Sticking to the classic but edgy graphic prints, the patterns go well with the chiffon dresses and ensembles and the predomination of black in the prints, as well as the bodycon approach could, more or less, help to disguise one’s unflattering body shape. Nevertheless, my two thumbs up would go to the extra-sexy frontal slit on the long skirt that gives the printed ensembles its dosage of spiciness and avant-gardeness.

For Balenciaga accessories junkies, look out for the innovatively designed footwear and superbly designed bracelets to match with your Balenciaga woman looks of the season. Err; by the way, did anyone see the bags? And if Mr. Ghesquière ask me who should front the new Balenciaga campaign, my ultimate answer would definitely be … Mimie (Camelia)!

Balenciaga’s fall/winter 2009-10 ready-to-wear and accessories collection will be available at Balenciaga standalone boutiques and selected retailers worldwide in early fall.

*Photos by Marcio Madeira for

Balenciaga – 02-05/06, Hilton Singapore Shopping Gallery; 581, Orchard Road, Singapore 238883; Unit M156, Siam Paragon Shopping Centre, 999/1 Rama 1 Road, Pathumwan, Bangkok 10330.

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