September 29, 2011

Versailles and Haute Couture Walk Hand in Hand

While visiting Versailles, and in particular, the Grand Trianon, I was able to walk through a lovely exhibit where modern day haute couture designers created pieces inspired by 18th Century fashion.  The garments were then displayed with the historic couturier counterparts.



Below is an excerpt from the exhibition...

"The 18th Century with its' floating dresses, its' voluminous skirts, flounces and furbelows, its silhouettes of minor marquis in three piece suits and its' immense hairstyles have never ceased to inspire the world of haute couture.  The Enlightenment, the age of French europe according to the famous saying, continues to fascinate.  The political and cultural prestige of France was at its' highest, when wit, lightness and elegance metamorphosed into a veritable art of fine living.  Since 1800, the fashion world has continued to refer back to the 18th Century for both women's and men's clothing as well as for its' textiles and accessories.

Like mirrors reflecting each other, the garments exhibited, from haute couture to ready to wear, propose a modern reading of that extravagant century.  Each designer adapts the period to his/her sensibility.  Some quote the 18th Century shapes almost literally, while others deconstruct them, expand their dimensions and interpret them in a riot of shimmering silks, embroidery and lace.  The dresses of the queens and princesses of the enlightenment dialogue down the years with these masterpieces of luxury and creativity".

- Dialogue as presented by the Grand Trianon and the Musee Galliera.


Below are a few of my favorite installations...
Balenciaga by Nicolas Ghesquiere
Pierre Balmain


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