Manish Arora zeroed in on the hot pink and bright orange of his rainbow palette for fall and used them to show how the digital world might look when transposed to the physical.
There were hearts everywhere, the occasional set of fangs and drips of blood, an endless range of cute emoji purses — round, sequined little numbers — and Tuzki sprang to life. China’s famous emoji character sat in the front row, tipping his enormous bobble head as models walked past, tapping his very short arms to the music.
Kimono-style jackets provided structure, as did a series of thick pillow-like scarves, knotted once, one end poking up and the other down. This was the grounding force in a world splashed with images, color and textures of all sorts, in Arora tradition.
Pant legs were cinched at the ankles, and dresses were long, often paired with short bomber jackets. Fabrics provided further contrast. A loose, faded jean jacket was embellished with flowers and carp with shimmery fins, worn with a long, pleated skirt covered with a layer of organza in the back. Completing the Japanese-inspired look, models were sent down the runway on wooden block sandals, painted brightly to match the collection.
Tuzki was splashed on clothing and accessories — including mini backpacks attached to belted waists — often meditating, often near the Eiffel Tower. He represented Arora, who meditates daily and spends a good deal of time in Paris.
“I was not so spiritual a few years ago, but it’s the need of the moment for me — that’s what I was expressing,” Aurora said after the show.
“Orange is the new Zen,” read the show notes.
While flashy colors and spirituality may seem odd bedfellows, Arora spun the idea into a captivating lineup.