Rabih Kayrouz pondered his own roots for fall, making this season a very personal and intimate affair. He staged the show in his mellow Saint-Germain atelier, where he also creates his couture line (this should have been a hint to this crafty collection), in front of a small crowd of no more than 150 people, rejecting the fashion calendar’s at times overbearing showmanship. He also returned to a decisively cleaner, more refined aesthetic following a few experimental seasons. It did him a lot of good.
Although minimalist at heart, the collection had swagger. Kayrouz worked with folds and volume on a series of cashmere-felt numbers featuring cute incisions that imbued the pieces with a delicate airiness. Some of the coats and dresses had been literally folded into shape, in a way evoking the ease of Oriental kaftans — a nod to the designer’s Lebanese roots — but rendered in a chic Parisian way. One coat was sliced on both sides, revealing a second layer, actually the coat’s front, which had large convoluted pockets. “All for the freedom of movement and gesture,” he explained backstage.
Though not a fan of ornaments, Kayrouz did embellish some of the simpler silhouettes with hand-rolled ceramic buttons, playing up the lineup’s artisanal theme, which, for the sake of modernity, could have done without the volley of tartan-patterned taffeta styles.