The Paule Ka woman is leaving Paris to spend some time in the sun. For his first collection for the Xavier Marie-owned contemporary label, creative director Maxime Simoëns, who joined the brand in March after spending two years at Azzaro, is stepping away from Paule Ka’s predilection for chic eveningwear and strict tailoring to move toward something a bit lighter.
“The idea of the collection was a woman going down to the South of France,” said Simoëns, pointing out the pink and yellow tones of suits and minidresses inspired by the facades of Provence houses, as well as a mimosa print on a blazer.
The designer introduced new techniques to the Paule Ka wardrobe, executed by the label’s atelier on the Rue Saint-Honoré, such as a cool, knitted, leather skirt and a cut-yarn jacquard suit with unfinished stitches. Simoëns updated the classic Paule Ka pantsuit by elevating the waist and adding flares to trousers, without forgetting the brand’s loyal clients, who come to Paule Ka for its simple eveningwear: Polka-dot chiffon dresses and long, flowing evening gowns made up the last part of the collection. “Perfect for an evening at the casino in Monte Carlo,” the designer said.
Simoëns readily admitted he is still finding his ground at Paule Ka, where he is currently working on his first full collection for the label, to be presented in September. “The challenge with Paule Ka is to create a wardrobe that would fit with a large range of different clients,” the designer said. “But I did a lot of sophisticated daywear for my own brand, so the Paule Ka woman isn’t a complete stranger to me.”