Balmain: Paris Fashion Week Autumn Winter 2012 Show Report

01 March 2012

The Balmain show in Paris this afternoon was a spectacle, bringing traffic to a standstill and causing a crowd go gather, and that was outside the venue! Inside the grand ballroom of Hotel Intercontinental, what must be the largest chandelier in Paris glittered ominously, suggesting even more glitter and bling to come.

To a soundtrack coming straight from the Best of.. By Depeche Mode, 28 year old Balmain designer Olivier Rousteing scored another hit with only his second collection for the house – and it was a bling fest of epic proportions.
To the uninitiated, Balmain is a fashion brand that has expensive rock n roll sexiness woven into its DNA. The Balmain woman does NOT wear a frou-frou cocktail frock, she wears a body-hugging mini-dress criss-crossed with a hundred weight of pearls and diamante picked out to resemble the precious  decoration on a priceless Faberge Egg.

Or she slinks about in emerald green hip-hugging velvet jeans with a matching nipped waist jacket, both glittering with pinpricks of light caught in a spray of crystals.

This was a show aimed at women who don't have the words "shy" and "retiring" in their vocabulary. We rather like it when the clothes didn't look like you needed the strength of a weight lifter to wear them.  We loved the Michael Jackson-inspired wide shoulder biker jackets with massive gilt studs – but as in the past we would have wanted it in shiny black, the designer sent one in baby pink down the runway. Not exactly everyday-life-friendly, but a girl can dream..

by Melanie Rickey in Paris


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