The French Couture Evening was one of the highlights of FIDé Fashion Weeks 2013 where three french couturiers namely, Alexis Mabille, On Aura Tout Vu and Julien Fournié would present their latest collections on the runway. Since the roots of haute couture is in France, I anticipated a spectacular couture fashion show with out of the world designs.
However, the grandiose element wasn’t present in any of the fashion show that evening and I went home feeling rather disappointed. It wasn’t just about the entertainment value of the fashion show but also the setting and lighting of the runway that disappoints me (and some other photographers too). No, it didn’t disappoints me but in fact, it just killed me to know that DSLR wasn’t that sensitive and smart enough to tackle the poor lighting conditions. I maybe an amateur when it comes to photography but I do know that light is a photographer’s ‘best friend’.
Dim lightning may exude a dark, mysterious and romantic feel to the whole staging experience but at the very same time, it may not do any justice to the exhibit the labour-intensive masterpieces of the various fashion designers. Under the sheer darkness, I wasn’t able to capture the minute details such as the embroidery or lace designs of the garments. Worse still, there were some harsh shadows that were casted on the models’ faces, making them look somewhat like faceless souls. Think Lord Veldemort. Perhaps I haven’t quite learnt how to dealt with the dim lighting conditions yet so I wasn’t able to capture great shots. But I’m pretty darn sure that other professional photographers seated around me were all silently cursing under their breath. Hi, where’s that beacon of light?
( Fall/Winter 2013 – 2014 Collection)
Alexis Mabille’s pieces were quite dramatic but if it could be even made more va-va-vroom with better lighting and a more upbeat music. Fashionistas may be more particular about the designer’s inspirations and garments but for me, a newcomer to the fashion world and a stage performer, I focused on the full sensory experience for the audience which includes the stage setting, music arrangement, models and even props. A good fashion show isn’t just about the garments, you know? And for those designers who put thoughts into their stage design and arrangement are often the ones who receive the loudest applause and sometimes even a standing ovation from the audience. Why? Simply because they had successfully captured our hearts.
Though there wasn’t any ‘splendicity’ in the show, Alexis Mabille hasn’t fail to show us what French elegance is all about. This 36-year-old Lyon-borned fashion designer is currently based in Paris, France. His namesake Haute couture fashion house, Alexis Mabille is also a member of the Fédération Française de la Couture, du Prêt-à-Porter des Couturiers et des Créateurs de Mode.
I would describe this Fall/Winter 2013 – 2014 collection as both classic and feminine. Using shades of pastels and lighter shades of grey, he has cleverly exuded the ‘soft’ yet ‘elegant’ side of women. There were a lot of lace and embroidery details to his dresses which spells out really ‘Parisien’ to me. C’est très chic!