Alexis Mabille is not for wallflowers: His lineup of dramatic evening gowns in brilliant hues and va-va-voom shapes was perfect for hothouse personalities like front-row guest Dita Von Teese, who flew in to help the French designer celebrate 10 years in business.
Sinewy sequined dresses upped the sizzle factor. They included a midnight-blue bustier gown fit for Jessica Rabbit, and another in silvery gray that split open in front to reveal corset laces — and more than a flash of bare skin.
Floral gowns were relatively more demure. A sequined black kimono was embroidered with giant poppies, while an oversize bloom sat on the shoulder of a pink crepe caftan. The latter opened the way for a sequence of curve-hugging gowns in mono-hue shades such as violet, raspberry, emerald and electric blue.
Mabille has a faithful couture clientele, especially in the Middle East, and this display stuck to his tried-and-tested formula of glamour dressing with an Old Hollywood feel.
“I really wanted a guy’s perspective on this collection,” he said after the show. “It’s this idea that you can be versatile, going from extremely dramatic one day to frivolous and soft the next. When you buy fashion and you love fashion, that’s what you want. You put on a performance, in a way.”
Mabille’s team deserves a special mention. The seamstresses were at work on Jan. 7, when terrorists burst into the office of satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo next door to their workshop and killed 12 people. In an impressive show of dedication and resilience, they delivered a flawlessly executed collection.