Paris: Haute Couture Wrap Up 2017

Couturiers prepare for months for the Paris haute couture shows two times each year.  Countless hours are spent on the details of every last garment to ensure the collection meets the specifications for the design house to retain their haute couture status.  This year’s show provided a little something for everyone, from dyed in the wool couture traditionalists to avant garde enthusiasts.

Giambattista Valli



Giambattista Valli knows his clientele.  The wealthy women who purchase his couture designs expect a level of refined elegance in every piece that is shown through exquisite one-of-a-kind craftmanship.  The feminine pieces in his fall 2017 couture collection were enveloped in stunning floral embroidery and hand-made appliques.  The floral embellishments laid atop sheer fabric, like tulle and chiffon, giving the models the appearance of being draped in flowers alone.  Valli described his theme for this show:


Nymphs and muses: The idea is to have this kind of freshness of these innocent girls, but with a slightly perverse touch


Armani Prive



For the couture client who prefers to keep her aesthetic understated, Armani Prive showed a collection of gorgeous, sleek silhouettes.  The collection featured streamlined pantsuits and separates finished with luxurious fabrics and luxurious details.   The models wore veiled hats and patterned stockings, giving them all an air of mystery.  In fact, the show notes identified the concept of the show as: cloaked in a halo of mystery.


In a moment when there is a lot of confusion between ready to wear and couture, I wanted to exalt the mysterious and the poetry that belongs to high fashion.  The pleasure of artfully evoking this vision has been lost…. On the other hand, simplicity on the runway always seems very prêt-à-porter.


Ralph & Russo



If you are looking for a haute couture for the red carpet, Ralph & Russo’s Fall 2017 collection provided plenty of options.  While the collection included plenty of beautiful daywear, the stunning gowns were the main attraction.  Crystals, beading, flowers, and fringe cascaded over breathtaking gowns in several silhouettes.  The diversity of silhouettes and styles was a purposeful decision by the designers.


The women of today have so many different faces, and so many women inspire us collectively, we really wanted to focus on women’s empowerment and offer something for everybody.


Viktor & Rolf



In the buzziest collection of the show, Viktor & Rolf brought a touch of the avant garde to the haute couture runway.  The show opened with models sporting enormous cartoon-like mascot heads atop the couture garments.  These “haute couture action dolls” wore voluminous coats and dresses, which somehow balanced out the oversized doll heads.  But why did the designers choose such an over-the-top look for their collection?


Reality is so surreal sometimes, nowadays, so we wanted to show the surreal and the real.


If you would like to learn more about the world of haute couture and the work that goes into maintaining haute couture status, be sure to read our helpful guide.  Which of these four collections was your favorite?  Let us know in the comments!

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Paris: Haute Couture Wrap Up 2017