Paris: John Galliano opened his show with an oversized Cossack-inspired coat featuring Eastern European motifs in the form of appliqués that decorated cuffs and a swath of fur at the hem. Followers of the theatrical designer will quickly recognize that he has covered this territory before. The Russian/Balkan/Eastern European inspiration appeared as recently as a year ago, one of the many exotic themes that Galliano is fond of exploring. Although the elaborate coats and over-the-top headpieces – decorated fez styles and exaggerated bows – cemented the escapist theme, a closer look revealed expertly tailored jackets, carrot-shaped pants, billowing skirts and jackets with Mongolian lamb fur sleeves that were perfectly in tune with the season’s trends. In a season where “less is more” and “return to basics” are key refrains, Galliano’s flashy production could feel a bit off-putting, but would we really want the designer to go minimal? A keen eye revealed that the designer is well aware of the current fashion environment, yet chooses to indulge his penchant for drama while still providing the season’s must-haves.
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