Hussein Chalayan S/S 2010 / PFW / Day five

When a mustachioed and slick-haired Hussein Chalayan turned out in a YSL suit, assumed his position at a podium and began narrating the runway in a synthesized voice like an old-school couture presentation, the question was, of course, what’s the high concept this time? “The religious lifestyles of the past…and values based around modern lifestyles,” was his answer after the show. Esoteric indeed, particularly considering the clothes left a general Fifties resort impression; a beautiful one, too. Bateau tops came paired with pencil skirts or cigarette capris and sheer shirtdresses belted over swimsuits captured a feeling of casual glamour and womanly chic. It was all hips, nipped waists and bombshell busts amped up by pointy bras worn under almost every look. Even tailored tuxedo jackets were deconstructed to suggest an hourglass figure. If, like Chalayan’s own getup, the clothes seemed almost uncharacteristically classic, a closer look revealed his signature cerebral twists — little hands that held the drape of a silk jacket or the neck of a boatneck top — made all the more effective by their subtlety. Evening saw a stronger indulgence, though still wearable, of his conceptual impulses in body-skimming gowns sculpted out of an intriguing midnight blue fabric, plisséd Japanese-style, which, as Chalayan said, “looked like waves splashing against the body.”

© by WWD / Photos by Dominique Maitre

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