Nina Ricci, Spring/Summer '09 (scroll down to read the review)
Watching the anatomy of a dress can be a fascinating exercise especially when the scalpel is wielded by a designer with as much talent as Olivier Theyskens.
That's what happened at last nights Nina Ricci show, which opened with a bare-bones, long-sleeved, gauzy underthing cut short in the front with a long train dragging behind it. That silhouette, coupled with the use of audacious black sheer stockings (a die-hard fashion no-no for the last decade) provided the building blocks of a collection that was almost entirely dedicated to the long dress.
With each subsequent look Theyskens built upon his vision of the gown, slowly adding print, panelled seaming, ruffles, tiny buttoning and even a web-like attachment to the stockings worn underneath, until each took on a life of their own. Not surprisingly it made for a beautiful show, even if at times it felt somewhat caught in Theyskens past obsession with Victorian dressmaking.
After last season's draped silken ode to the pant - a trend which is catching on like wildfire across the always-parched plains of fashion - one rather hoped to see what Theyskens had to say for day. As it was, the two pants shown on his runway - lean in the calf with fluttering petal strips built in to the hip region - left us salivating for more.