the highlights from haute couture fashion week

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  • Couture dresses are the perfect escapism, which is why I always look forward to Haute Couture Week, taking place this week in Paris, which always delivers the most extravagantly dreamy dresses.

    The SS22 shows have not disappointed so far, with Chanel’s Virginie Viard opening with royal Charlotte Casiraghi riding on horseback, decked in sequinned black tweed – and Dior’s Maria Grazia Chiuri collaborating with Indian artist couple Madhvi and Manu Parekh, the Chanakya Atelier and the Chanakya School of Craft for a spellbinding collection.

    Here are all the best moments from Haute Couture Fashion Week.

    Chanel SS22

    How do you open your show with a bang? By sending a royal on a horse down the runway of course. Viard explained, ‘The idea for the show’s décor came from a longstanding desire to work with Xavier Veilhan. His references to constructivism remind me of those of Karl Lagerfeld. I like this similarity of spirit between us, now and across time. In addition to creating the show décor with its references to the avant-gardes of the 1920s and 1930s, Xavier wanted to work with Charlotte Casiraghi. His artistic universe is full of horses and Charlotte is a skilled rider.’

    The collection itself was a nod to many of the house’s signature styles, from iridescent tweed jackets to colourful lace, jewelled buttons to two-tone Mary Janes.

    All of the House of CHANEL’s embroidery partners collaborated on this collection, ‘one of whose key pieces is a dress entirely embroidered by Lesage with constructivist camellias in black, white and coral beads, worn with a little black jacket’, Virginie Viard points out before concluding: ‘These references also belong to Gabrielle Chanel, of course. It’s like a conversation that crosses time.’

    As is tradition, the show was closed by a bride, this time carrying a black bouquet in honour of French actor and Chanel muse Gaspard Ulliel, who sadly passed away after a skiing accident last week.

    Dior SS22

    Dior once again celebrated the craftsmanship of its atelier with an intricately embroidered and embellished collection. Architecture met art in the structured dresses and separates, with standout pieces including bejewelled tights, feather-trimmed gowns, embroidered bodies and draped silhouettes.

    Maria Grazia Chiuri also collaborated with the Indian artist couple Madhvi and Manu Parekh, the Chanakya Atelier and the Chanakya School of Craft.

    Zuhair Murad SS22

    Zuhair Murad transports us for SS22 to a universe of mysterious hidden islands and revives the grandeur of the age of navigating the high seas. Imagine ornate jewels, silver embroidery, gold chains and pearls aplenty.

    Valentino SS22

    The Valentino show will be aired on 26th January at 12pm, so keep your eyes peeled.

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