Making a bold return to the runway after 3 years of absence, Lebanese designer Rabih Kayrouz held a beautifully intimate couture show in a sincere Parisian flat that overlooked a solemn winter garden where he showcased an elevated collection that dared the boundaries of Haute Couture fashion, exhibiting silhouettes that reflect ready-to-wear functionalism while also toying with the idea of subtlety, luxury and solace.
Giving the audience the pleasure of appreciating his creations up close, models frolicked around the Parisian flat carrying glasses of champagne that were offered to members of the audience, exuding euphoric liberation through their movements, simply creating what was seen to be a cinematic display of love.
MESSAGE FROM THE DESIGNER:
Kayrouz’s garments are made for women – not passing trends, themes, events or muses. He’s solely drawn to how women use clothes, how women live in his clothes, and their feelings and emotions when in his clothes.
“I’m inspired by this woman in love,” he said to Vogue backstage. “This collection is about a woman reminiscing about her lover, and dreaming about love, about the memories of the moments they’ve shared.” Wanting to replicate his visions cinematically – “I see her walking around the city, feeling as if she were embraced by the clothes she’s wearing, enveloped in their warmth, protected, happy.”
TAIOLORING + SILHOUETTES
Draping, moulded blouses, blazers tailored at the waist, coats and long-sleeve dresses that wrap around the body.
The garments’ construction was about the idea of being “in an embrace,” explained Kayrouz. The sensual execution looked effortless on the women, seeming as though they were made on their bodies. The garments were inspired by the idea of a woman in a “natural gesture of hugging herself.” Kayrouz created garments of protection – protection from the outside, protection of love, protection of happiness, protection of intimacy and femininity and masculinity.
Juxtaposing themes and ideas were running wild in this collection. Kayrouz played with hardness and softness, structure alongside fluidity, protection and carelessness. The pairing of the juxtaposing garments revealed to be exciting and personal and honest and loving – everything exuded relaxed confidence and ease, anything but rigid.
“Haute couture is all about construction—the perfection of savoir-faire” said Kayrouz.
Rabih Kayrouz took fashion back to the pre-runway era when shows were held in smaller, more intimate conditions, with models entering a room to really show off a collection. For his SS23 Haute Couture show, the Lebanese designer sent models springing around through a maze of rooms in a Paris flat, heels tapping the wooden floors, high on the feeling of love.
Kayrouz’s sartorial storytelling is like no other. Models entered in and out of various rooms, communicating with their bodies the words: ‘I’m in love’ to a youthful, fun-loving composition of female laughter, piano and other harmonious elements composed by French Musician Owlle.
Kayrouz masterfully combined a plethora of colours, tones, hues and textures to accentuate his detailed constructions’. He mixed soft muted tones – beige, brown, navy, cream – with reminiscent autumn tones – maroon, orange, grey – and vibrant bold castings – yellows, blues, reds and greens. Kayrouz additionally invited texture and pattern to his garments to further underline the liveliness of his collection. All of that is then roughened with a bold black square boot.
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