Those nuns de la mode can sleep smugly -- er, snugly -- at night. Intellectual fashion is safe with Rei Kawakubo. This time out for Comme des Garcons, the diva of drear was more cerebral than ever. In her quest to cover the body with single, continuous pieces of fabric, she concocted cocoons with thick, vertical rolls that extended from the neck to the ankles. Along the way, she bound the arms to the body from shoulder to elbow, rendering them virtually useless.
Rei addressed -- and tore apart -- a number of the season's trends. The heavy, steamed wool military coats and jackets looked as though they'd seen serious time in the trenches, but had a certain charm over sweeping, colorful velvet skirts with glimpses of tulle beneath. She also crossed metallic silver with brown lining fabric for a series of inside-out looks, and took the little sweater to a shriveled extreme, cropping it above the breasts to put over all sorts of likewise distressed pieces.

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