Looking to the Seventies, Richard René said he found a certain freedom to enjoy life — smoking wasn’t considered vulgar back then, for example. He also discovered a plush brown and white carpet with the brand’s logo — and that became this season’s motif. The pattern — sleek, no shag here — was worked into a fancy lineup that included cigarette trousers, a Bermuda shorts-length jumpsuit with a plunging neckline and scooped back, and suits and trenchcoats fitting for today’s bourgeois trend.
Guy Laroche was after ease and sexiness, so his was a natural fit for Madame Claude’s call girls, as seen wearing the label in the late Seventies film “The French Woman.”
Seeking to update their look, René gave them peek-a-boo cuts that veered daringly into peep-show territory. There were navels — thanks to a cutout on one side of an ankle-skimming dress, and hips — a side hole on a denim jumpsuit dotted with round, flesh-baring windows like a thin slice of Swiss cheese.
As the Jeffrey Epstein scandal continues feed the news cycle, the theme may sound a bit awkward. But embracing it, with a dash of humor, René added a pattern of oversize 500 franc bills, which he used for flowing skirt and blouse ensembles, and a neat little satchel. He also sat film star Françoise Fabian — she portrayed Madame Claude in the movie — in the front row.
Bringing back men’s wear for the first time in many years, he made it chic and preppy, with a slightly sporty touch — white suits, silky shirts.
“This collection is dedicated to these liberated girls and boys who for a few 500 franc notes contributed to the splendor of France,” he wrote in the show notes.