Rihanna wearing Pascal Millet

LIGHTENED LOAD: What started out as a thinner Paris Fashion Week has become even lighter.

In a break with a nine-year tradition, Pascal Millet has canceled his runway show. The French designer, who was scheduled to take the 7 p.m. slot on March 1, said in a brief statement that the brand recently opened up to new investors, without elaborating further. Sales sessions will still be held on March 3 to 9 as originally planned.

Also canceling her show is Danish designer Anne Sofie Madsen, who was scheduled for 7 p.m. on March 4. The brand did not provide an explanation and did not respond immediately to a request for comment.

The late-stage bow-outs came as a handful of other labels were notably absent this season for a variety of reasons.

Alexis Mabille is foregoing his runway show for showroom appointments, which will be accompanied with a film clip, to present his new collection. The French designer said he is focusing on tuxedos and evening gowns.

Esteban Cortázar ended a dozen-year run in Paris and moved to New York for his fall collection, accepting a one-season invitation. It was a homecoming of sorts; the Colombian-born designer started his fashion career in Miami and debuted his first collection in New York in 2002.

Acne Studios moved off the calendar and showed its ready-to-wear collection in Paris during Haute Couture week. Also missing from the lineup was Moncler Gamme Rouge, which has been discontinued as part of a strategy shift by Moncler chief executive officer Remo Ruffini.

Also sitting out are labels with lead-designer changes: Céline, which recently appointed Hedi Slimane; and Mugler, which named American designer Casey Cadwallader in December.

Emanuel Ungaro and Liselore Frowijn also opted out of the catwalk this season, with Ungaro sticking to a showroom and Frowijn planning to reveal her collection in April.

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