Haute Couture Week usually makes headlines for its innovative creations, but this year has been especially thrilling because it marks some designers’ first public appearances since the pandemic began.
Four Lebanese designers are among the 29 showing their wares in the French capital this week, and two chose presentations over more conventional runway exhibitions.
Now, if you haven’t had a chance to travel to Lebanon, do so when you get the chance.
Why? Well, dear reader, to put it simply, in my humble view, the Levant is the diamond in the crown. Both Lebanese and visitors from other countries adore the country’s Mediterranean Sea shoreline. However, many individuals might not be aware that Lebanon has given the world the gift of Haute craftsmanship. Dress shops are everywhere as you drive across Beirut, but not all gowns are created equal. You can’t go wrong when there are so many skilled couture masters to select from. Among the celebrities who have shone brightly this week are the designers Georges Chakra, Georges Hobeika, and Elie Saab.
Georges Chakra, who is known for wearing bright clothing himself, presented his collection. His AW22/23 Couture collection, but in a cinematic approach, accentuates passionate youth wandering the streets of the City of Lights. The two famous Parisian landmarks that served as the foundation were the Arc de Triomphe and the Eiffel Tower. His palette’s primary hues and foundation materials were royal blues, iridescent gold, raven, silver, cardamom, and blue geode. “I felt a connection to the city, which attracted me. This collection captures evenings spent gazing through lace-like wrought-iron balconies and standing on zinc-covered rooftops. When asked how she would define the collection, Chakra replied, “I would describe it as vibrant, feminine, sexy, and wild.
The collection’s 49 styles, like the dazzling faux leather coat in silver or the miniskirt with sequins swinging open over it, speak to Chakra’s aesthetic preferences. Tulle, silk chiffon, and mousseline organza are used to make gowns. The banding is one style from the collection that nods to Paris. The aesthetic was defined by the house as “a reoccurring element throughout the collection, each band is sculpted and fitted, and hand woven into complex coils, adding a nuance to the delicate ironwork of Paris balconies.” Additionally, the jacket’s tiered silk faille sleeves and intricately twisted velvet tubes added drama. The bridal dress had rose gold lace in a column shape with tinsel sequins encased in cream tulle. The Duchesse satin train was a work of art and mesmerising.
Chakra was overjoyed to be visiting folks again in Paris. It’s quite exciting because we can engage with customers and the media, allowing them to see the collection in person.
Georges Hobeika made a comeback to actual runway displays this season. Since the pandemic started, he hasn’t been spotted in Paris, and he recently designated his son Jad Hobeika co-creative director. The father-and-son team didn’t let anyone down.
“The essence of the house, Nature, is embodied in this couture collection. This season, we’re approaching the subject in a new way, where love, acceptance, and the need to thrive stem from an infinite universe of “Eternal Gifts,” such as water, sunlight, air, and the simple experience of being alive. I’d describe it as a subdued eruption of passion, creativity, and colours,” Georges added.
It was a calculated decision to give the first look six months to finish in order to establish the tone for the rest of the collection. Self-expression and inspiration are crucial at this time, as demonstrated by the usage of a silver mini-dress with spikes ringing the bodysuit. The show’s predominant colours were Mediterranean blues, peachy oranges, yellow, fuchsias, pistachio green, and pink. Many items were embellished with crystals and feathers, and some pieces had futuristic shapes cut out of them.
“It’s wonderful to be back! The company has returned with a tonne of wonderful surprises and elaborate inventiveness. Georges exclaimed with pleasure, “We loved making this a terrific experience for every fashion enthusiast and creative out there.
Elie Saab‘s major break came when Halle Berry, an American actress who won a Best Actress Academy Award for Monster’s Ball, donned his crimson embroidered gown to the Oscars in 2002. Since then, he has dressed celebrities and members of the music industry for red carpet occasions. Saab is best known for dressing ladies, but at his Couture presentation this week in Paris, he debuted a wide range of styles for males.
The concept of the collection, “The Beginning of Twilight,” was introduced at the event, which was held in the Carreau du Temple, with Law Roach, an American fashion stylist, in attendance. The home described the dawn’s twilight as “the last instance of suspended serenity before the stars begin to flame alive.” Saab was also influenced by the colours and soft sounds of dusk to create the collection. The colour scheme was composed of blues, blacks, neutrals, golds, reds, greys, and pinks. In some cases, the men’s looks resembled kimonos, but in others they were more akin to the formal bisht robes that men in the Middle East wear. These robe outfits radiated the pinnacle of masculinity thanks to their clean lines and precise craftsmanship.
Feminine designs for women emphasised the female shape, from regal shoulders to sculpted legs. Graceful capes and floor-length sashes added a special touch to gowns, while contouring chiffon cuts added elegance. It was one of Saab’s best collections, intriguing and breathtaking.