Dutch-Vietnamese designer Xuan-Thu Nguyen chose a white, uncluttered space for her second show as a guest member of the couture calendar. Using the silk ruffles and asymmetry emblematic of her spring collection, Nguyen designed pieces she says reflect her own internal contradictions.
The contrasts came in all forms. A short jacket decorated with small leather flowers, shiny, metallic pink on one side and matte gray on the other, could almost be taken for a fur coat.
Ruffles spilled off the arm of one model, and jutted out from the front of a pair of pencil-thin trousers on another.
Nguyen added a playful touch to some of the more somber looks, even sending two fake fox pelts down the runway, one draped over a shoulder. On closer inspection, these were made of intricately-sewn cloth flowers.
She worked a palette dominated by black, cream and dusty pink. Crocheted flowers came in bolder colors, with small yellow and bright pink buds peeking out of patches of ivory, giving a whimsical touch to the dresses.
Nguyen also experimented with wide brimmed hats with tombstone-like tops.
“I like to change classics into what I believe is a bit different, see how far I can go,” said Nguyen, lifting her daughters aged two and four into her arms backstage after the show.