When looking for that perfect red carpet option, Elie Saab can be relied on for showstoppers. This season, he looked to the symbolism of China and East Asia for a tale of feminine power and opulence. Particular emphasis was placed on the shoulder lines, so structured they felt martial even on a glittering lace and an embroidered base. To wit: a court-style jacket in black and red, richly embroidered in gold and further embellished with black feathers.
As is his wont, the couturier spun his inspiration throughout the collection, integrating details such as high collars in a qipao style on column dresses, trailing sleeves or wide celadon-hued silk edges to an off-the-shoulder cream gown embroidered in gold peonies. Elsewhere, dragons, crane or cloud motifs entered his embroidery repertoire, tumbling down the back of trains or filling vast expanses of fabric.
Dotted throughout were accessories furthering the theme, from headdresses of golden coins, inter-finger ruby rings or a cluster of gilded leaves curling down from one ear. Saab certainly had the opulence down pat, but the strength came across best in those looks where movement looked as fluid as those curling clouds.