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COUTURE IN MOTION

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Yesterday, in the gardens of the Musée Rodin in Paris, Raf Simons presented his spring-summer 2014 haute couture collection for Dior. We take a look.

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The line is fluid, simple. It falls on the body, exploring the feminine forms. A twisted volume here, a boule back there. A shoulder nonchalantly bared by the asymmetry of the top of a dress. A Bar  jacket sleeve that balloons from the elbow. A short jumpsuit, a full coat. Eveningwear sneakers. If the attitude seems insouciant it's because the general silhouette is one of overwhelming simplicity. But however, in order for the line to appear so simple on the outside, an extremely complex construction is necessary on the inside: here, the work of the haute couture ateliers is pushed to the limit. The savoir-faire of the house of Dior is unique and the mastery of craft exceptional. And it's in motion that this work and handling becomes apparent: in the panels of a Bar  jacket, lightened through openwork, whose impeccable hang seems to sculpt the body; in the ruffled volume that dances around the legs under a long white gown perfect for the red carpet; in a pleating of contrasting colors that twists around the bust to fall like an airy train over the skirt; or with mobile beads caught inside little volumes of transparent fabric. It's in movement, too, that the incredible layering of fabrics really comes to the fore, a dozen layers of transparency through whose thicknesses, openwork and voiles the eye travels to pick out the motifs that repeat into infinity. An embroidery on a navy blue dress is identical to the silk jacquard on the transparent black coat covering it. Circles, round shapes that aren't quite round, ovoid enmeshments, elongated hearts. And underneath: little bouquets of flowers whose beaded pistils seem to tinkle when they move. Everything is of an unexpected delicacy almost as if the dresses don't have bodies inside them. And this is exactly what Raf Simons was aiming for. It's a collection focused on intimacy and femininity, on the link that unites woman and couturier, going as far as each ones personality. In haute couture, each outfit is unique. As is each woman who wears it. 

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