So I watched Charlotte Gray last night which was beautifully shot, brilliantly acted, and horridly heart-wrenching. But the costumes...WOW! Really had me thinking of how much of the '40's, my absolute favorite fashion era, were all over the fall runways this year...lucky me! Lucky us! And that got me thinking of my love for Alber Elbaz at Lanvin. His collection for Fall 2009 was exquisitely draped and although a bit somber (perhaps for the times), it still offered the undeniably Lanvin-esque Parisian stature, grace and elegance that one would expect. This is how, you would imagine, French women dress -- for their day, for a meeting. Reflective of the economical downturn yet defiant in its right to give up the sense of femininity and style no one wants to completely surrender...especially if you are lucky enough to live and work in Paris.
The shapes here, and the draping, again...genius. The thigh-high leather boots were literally EVERYWHERE and I'm interested to see how they will translate to the street. I, for one, would go out and buy a pair right now but I'm not sure how such a highly stylized element will work in the moderate/conservative atmosphere of downtown Raleigh, NC. The colors, yes, black, bone, slate grays, might seem overly expected when you think about how fashion parallels the low density of our wallets at present, but I will always be a sucker for these colors...they are are timelessly chic.
I love the accessories, as well, and they compliment each piece so effortlessly. No, I am not a fan of fur (that's just one fashion commodity I will never support) but you could easily replicate the effect here with a faux piece or (even better) a vintage piece that happens to be faux as well. Black leather gloves were also seen on more than one runway this season and I absolutely intend to buy them in a variety of lengths for the fall...what an easy way to give your ensemble a little extra something without breaking the bank.
Shoulders are another big focus this year and I like the way Elbaz kept them soft but still gave them shape. The length of the skirts are perfect, too. I was getting so tired of the short short minis I've seen way too much of over the summer (girls in these parts need to look up the the sex appeal of being a bit demure...it goes much further, trust me -- and seriously, the gladiator look was NOT mean to be taken so literally...I saw a handful of girls on the street last week that looked like extras from Troy). Proportions have seemed off for an entire season so I'm excited to see a return to lady-like attire that is not overly mature or dated. It's a nod to the past but still completely contemporary and completely modern.
This is fashion for the fashionable. And these are my favorite pieces from the collection...