To all you guys who are nice enough to read my blog, I apologize for assaulting you with fashion reports from Paris, but just one more, okay?? Besides, as I just explained to a friend in the states, in France, fashion shows are not considered only of interest to women. The men here (in France, and Europe generally) consider these fashion shows interesting hunting grounds for ‘real’ men—-they go to ogle the models, and check out the women who go to the shows. That’s actually a pretty clever idea; there are lots of good looking women (and men) at the shows. So with all due respect to both sexes, I just thought I’d tell you about the Givenchy ready to wear show I recently saw. It was a Wow!!!
It was held in the evening, at the Palais de Tokio, a museum for modern art, it was in a very large space, that was quite barren and all cement, and the fashion house of Givenchy had transformed it with the long benches we sat on, and huge archways of green leaves with deep purple orchids over the runway, which immediately suggested a kind of jungle/garden theme. We sat expectantly on the benches eyeing each other with interest, press, journalists, store buyers (who come to order the clothes, which is actually the whole point of the ready to wear fashion shows), a smattering of movie stars, and a horde of people who just love fashion and fight like dogs to get invited to these shows. The tickets to attend are REALLY hard to get, and are considered a prize, to be able to get in. The whole contingent from American Vogue was there, the famous Grace Coddington, one of the icons of the fashion world, with her brilliant red hair that stands out from her head kind of like a Pharaoh’s hairdo in red, and the imposing and always chic Andre Leon Talley, who is roughly 6’l0″, and a major presence in the fashion world. Their presence tells you it’s a Major Event!!! And we all waited expectantly for the show to begin (they always start about a half hour late). The people-watching was, as always fantastic!!! (I wore a Givenchy black wool coat with a big black fox collar and cuffs, black pants, and my own long red hair down (I like Grace Coddington’s better—-it’s pouffier, and redder!! I want to be her when I grow up) And I had an interesting conversation with a British journalist behind me, and there were Italians there en masse, Spaniards, I heard some German, Russian, Japanese….it’s a very international crowd.
And then the room went dark. I mean really dark, pitch black. And in the darkness was the LOUDEST lion roaring, or tiger, or whatever, I have ever heard. The sound exploded in the room, and continued for a minute, the lights over the runway went on, the music came up, and the show began. The runway runs between the rows of seats, so you could reach out and touch the models if you dared, and you can really see the clothes only a foot or two away from you. Clearly, it was going to be a jungle theme of some kind after that roar, and with those archways of purple orchids. And out came 43 gorgeous, very tall, way too skinny beautiful models of varying nationalities as well, wearing next fall’s Givenchy collection, with lots of jungle prints, black jaguar faces on them, skirts covered in leafy prints. Lots and lots of very, very, very short skirts, some with transparent underskirts under them (and I was reminded of my mother in law’s comment in my days of mini skirts at l8 —-“is that a belt?”). The tops were mostly jungle themes as well, with some leather jackets, some velvet, a gorgeous yellow sweater, a purple one, and many with black jaguar heads on them, and jungle cat designs. It was hot!!! And very cool, and totally beautiful. Some really gorgeous clothes and some fun things. The show did not disappoint anyone who saw it, it was lively and happy and terrific to watch (although I would surely get arrested in one of those tiny short skirts with the see through underskirt beneath it!! But I could wear the tops!!!) The whole procession of models took roughly 20 minutes, and then it’s over and there is a huge crush to the door, to go on to the next show, meet up with friends or colleagues, or go out to dinner (I picked dinner with a friend). There are several hundred photographers at every show, snapping people on the way in and out, and photographing the entire show, which is the whole point, other than the store buyers, the idea is to expose next season’s line to the press. It is VERY exciting being at those shows if you love fashion at all, or like people watching. It is definitely a scene!!!
The Italian designer of Givenchy, Ricardo Tisci, took a rapid bow at the end, and he is the object of much conjecture at the moment, while people wonder if he will go to Dior, since they lost their designer last week (John Galliano). The people at Givenchy are worried that Ricardo Tisci will leave and they will lose their very distinctive look. Last night was really a great show.
I just wanted to share that with you. It was too good, too exciting, and too much fun not to share with you. I’m going to one more show, the last one for me this season, Chanel. And I probably won’t be able to resist telling you about that too!!! I had a blast at this one!!!