I may be the founder of a vintage couture store, but I am not a wearer of vintage couture. I do have an extensive collection of men's vintage designer clothing, but Haute Couture has usually been for the girls. I am fortunate to own two men's late 60s Valentino Couture jackets, but most of the shows from the last decade have been filled with women's creations. However, this afternoon Jean Paul Gaultier delivered something for the boys and plenty for the girls.
A sudden 11th hour fitting forced me to skip Valentino (which I hear was stunning) but I did make it to the Marais in time for Gaultier's smashing show that thankfully started an hour tardy as I was running late! This is probably the first time I was grateful for such a late start time. I was also grateful that a fan was strategically placed on each seat as Gaultier's studio is always sweltering. He may be hustling six-figure gowns, but the climate feels more Third World than G6.
I will happily shvitz for a greatest hits collection of Gaultier. Likely inspired by his own retrospective currently up at the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts and traveling to Dallas and San Francisco, Gaultier's DNA was in full force as his pinstriped sharp masculine-feminine styling (men in skirts), variations of trench coats, and intrasia sweaters (done in feathers) paraded down the catwalk. The sensational Madame Gres exhibit at the Musee Bourdelle has had designer's mimicking her iconic pleating; and Gaultier knife pleated flesh-hued gowns with trench coat details. It was great to see Gaultier Muse and 90s shaved model Eve Salvail looking ageless in a coned bra "Blond Ambition" white jersey strapless goddess gown. As for the boys, I can personally live without the maxi marabou feather skirt, but am partial to a particular puffer jacket in sheer fabric that revealed camouflage colored down filling. Like Lagerfeld at Chanel, Gaultier played with peplum's on jacket, but Gaultier's looked so sleek as pantsuits. Looks were named after ballet-isms ("triple pirouette") and past stars (Rudolph Nureyev). There even was a black leather draped trench called "Black Swan". French pop star Mylene Farmer closed the show in a black tutu. Need I saw more?
This was a perfect way to end the official Haute Couture fashion week with a front row seat and a stellar show, but it got better as selected guests were invited to the launch fete of the new Gaultier men's fragrance, Kokorico. All the models who had just strutted their stuff partied with the guests making it all the easier to see the beautiful clothing up close. The bottle is in the shape of a man's profile and the eclectic smelling cologne with touches of patchouli and cocoa beans is perfect for the peacock who can carry off a cape or black diamond knickers.
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