By and  on February 20, 2012

PARIS — With the diaries of editors and retailers already bulging for the upcoming Paris Fashion Week, which opens on Feb. 28, WWD highlights a few noteworthy launches, from Myriam Schaefer’s signature luxury bag line to the presentation of the first capsule clothing collection of hip Paris accessories designer Olympia Le-Tan.

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Alfred Hitchcock’s icy heroines and a photograph of Charlotte Rampling taken by Helmut Newton were among starting points for Cédric Charlier’s debut signature collection — a focused, urban, working-woman’s wardrobe.

“I like the idea of a woman who is independent and audacious,” said the designer, who teamed up with Cutler and Gross for the line’s modern mirrored shades.

Copper zippers and buttons add a touch of warmth and light to sharply constructed tailoring and dresses, some with corset constructions, in dark neutrals like navy and charcoal with touches of burgundy and green. Even the line’s knitwear is coated in a metallic copper.

Fabrics go from herringbone wools and crepes to iridescent polyester and fake leather with a convincing buttery hand.

There are also bags and shoes.

The collection is positioned in the affordable luxury bracket, going from $300 for a top or skirt to $1,200 for a dress.

Charlier, who was Cacharel’s creative director for four seasons before parting ways with the house in 2011, counts as his licensee Italy’s Aeffe SpA., which produces the Cacharel collection. Charlier’s résumé includes stints at Celine under Michael Kors and Jean Paul Knott and Lanvin under Alber Elbaz.

Charlier’s collection will be presented Tuesday at the Lycée Turgot in Paris.

NEXT: Glenn Martens >>


A graduate of Antwerp’s Royal Academy of Fine Arts, Glenn Martens is among the season’s promising new faces, with a unique debut effort that brims with potential.

In terms of experience, the designer has worked for Jean Paul Gaultier and Yohan Serfaty. Reflecting a quintessentially Belgian aesthetic, Martens’ new signature collection was inspired by the medieval Gothic architecture of Bruges, the designer’s home town. Focusing on long and lean graphic silhouettes, the pieces are designed to be easy to wear despite their complex constructions. They come in a variety of rich and plain fabrics to suit different moods and occasions.

Easy-chic elements include T-shirts and bomber jackets in watery moiré silks and soft oversize blazers, while trickier pieces include Martens’ intriguing take on pants, cut to hang as flat-as-a-pancake at the front, like a strict skirt.

NEXT: Olympia Le-Tan >>

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