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“Coiled Corset,” Shaun Leane for Alexander McQueen, Fall/Winter 1999

Kate Bethune

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

The “Coiled Corset” is an example of radical body adornment made by jeweler Shaun Leane for fashion designer Alexander McQueen’s collection “The Overlook” (fall/winter 1999). Leane, who originally trained as a jeweler and goldsmith, first worked with McQueen in 1995, when he made silver watch chains for his “Highland Rape” collection (fall/winter 1995). His creative collaborations with McQueen soon propelled him to work with new materials and on a much larger scale to create elaborate body sculpt

Pink

Emma Davenport

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

Associated with cultural symbols of affection and sensuality, the color pink has often been used to depict and challenge gender identities. On the catwalk, pink has appeared in the work of a variety of designers including Versace, Chanel, Stella McCartney, and John Richmond. From pastel shades to dazzling brights, pink has been a frequent trend across all seasons, whether used to create a splash of warmth in the winter or a spot of coolness in the summer. Featured both in womenswear and menswear,

Stephen Sprouse, Fall/Winter 1988

Lorynn Divita

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

Stephen Sprouse was a pioneer in merging street style and high fashion. During his early career at Halston, he was drawn to the downtown New York punk scene. Working with Keith Haring, Jean-Michel Basquiat, and Andy Warhol, his fall/winter collection of 1988 had all of the hallmarks of a Sprouse collection, with Day-Glo fabrics, sheath dresses, and bold graffiti prints. It was also Sprouse’s last collection for a decade. Stephen’s career flourished again at the end of his life thanks to his famou

Christian Dior Haute Couture by John Galliano, Fall/Winter 1997–1998

Waleria Dorogova

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

Following his enthusiastically celebrated debut at Dior, for his second couture collection, John Galliano staged another highly theatricalized défilé in the notoriously gallant environment of the Jardin de Bagatelle. It was the first set design in a series commissioned from Michael Howells, who created complementing backdrops for Galliano’s garments and scenography. Aesthetical measures established in the first show for spring—traditional visual codes and the sartorial heritage of Christian Dior,

Article

The omnipresent significance of the eighteenth century and the masked ball for the House of Dior found expression in the design of “Angie” for the “Masquerade and Bondage” collection, a short variation on 1760s court dress, paraphrasing the fashionable life and cruel fate of Marie Antoinette. Using the surface of the hip panels as a canvas for narrative and caricaturized embroideries, the dress becomes an epitome of storytelling through dressmaking, evoking crucial episodes of French history. Gal

Alexander McQueen for Givenchy, Fall/Winter 2000

Lydia Edwards

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

“I can’t be too literal with my references,” Alexander McQueen said in 2000, when asked to pinpoint the theme of a recent collection. “It’s a number of references culminating together to make one idea.” Nevertheless, with a researched family history dating back to the 1500s, McQueen always acknowledged that “Every part of my background comes from something, be it the Jacobites or the Huguenots,” and influences from Giovanni Bellini to André Courrèges can be glimpsed in his collections. The pieces

Vivienne Westwood, “On Liberty,” Fall/Winter 1994

Lydia Edwards

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

“My job, more than anything, is to idealize women,” Vivienne Westwood has said of her work, including the fall/winter collection “On Liberty,” which premiered in Paris in 1994. Her appropriation of historic styles is well known, but in this collection a reinvention of the bustle, the nineteenth-century skirt support that accented a woman’s behind and allowed for elaborate skirt drapery, is more fluid than similar iterations have been. Westwood’s stark wire cage from 1990, for instance, was not so

Jean Paul Gaultier Menswear, Fall/Winter 1989

Tony Glenville

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

It is firstly important to put Gaultier within the context of his times. From the first catwalk show he was considered an “enfant terrible” yet at the same time a superb craftsman, and a designer who acknowledged the history and heritage of French fashion. His view of the world was from Paris and however much time he spent time in London and declared his admiration for London club culture and youthful attitudes to style, he remains a designer whose reference points span Madame Grès to Barbès Roch

Chanel Haute Couture, Karl Lagerfeld, Fall/Winter 1984

Michelle Honig

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

Shown at the Palais Garnier in Paris, home of the national opera, this fashion show was the most lavish and over-the-top fashion event in Paris at the time and began Karl Lagerfeld’s tradition of showmanship and set design. As with Karl’s first Chanel collection, this collection was panned for its deviation from Chanel’s trademark of easy comfort, with the classic Chanel suit made in a fitted silhouette that outlined the derrière. But it was also praised by others for updating Chanel’s image from

Chanel Haute Couture, Karl Lagerfeld, Fall/Winter 1985

Michelle Honig

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

This collection continued the development of Lagerfeld’s Chanel. Beaded looks were made to look like intricate tapestries and the hems of skirts were either floor-length or well above the knee, a deviation from Chanel’s strict rule of creating skirts 2 in. (5 cm) below the knee, no matter the fashion. The final bridal look was a white satin miniskirt suit. Two-tone, matronly pumps were a Chanel signature; the black stilettos in the collection underscored the younger, sexier direction of the house

Chanel Haute Couture, Karl Lagerfeld, Fall/Winter 1990

Michelle Honig

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

In this collection, presented in the Champs-Élysées cinema, Karl Lagerfeld introduced the “slope,” a new iteration of the Chanel jacket that featured a narrow-fitting shoulder line. The clothes were influenced by a combination of eighteenth-century robes à la française and the mod 1960s, with open panniers that revealed miniskirts and thigh-high boots. The playfulness of the collection spoke to the young and daring attitude of the new couture customer. For the finale, Lagerfeld presented three br

Chanel Haute Couture, Karl Lagerfeld, Fall/Winter 1991

Michelle Honig

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

This collection is an example of what Bernadine Morris at the New York Times termed “the new age of haute couture,” where couture was about exploring directional, fashion-forward concepts instead of just creating opulent clothing. Presented at the École Nationale Supérieure des Beaux-Arts, Lagerfeld subverted stiff, prom-dressy tulle by molding it into gaucho pants, puffy parkas, and bubble dresses. Atypical fabrics like cellophane and plastic were used on classic tweed jackets. He also introduce

Bill Blass, Fall/Winter 1997

Michelle Honig

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

Shown in the tents at Bryant Park, New York, Bill Blass’s fall/winter 1997 collection did not have any one particular theme. Instead, he designed simple, classic clothes encompassing a range of styles and looks. There were hints of the 1980s, a decade that other designers—such as Oscar de la Renta—looked to for inspiration for their own fall collections. There were animal prints—ranging from giraffe to python—that glorified the animal kingdom, cubist-patterned velvet jackets over wool pants, and

Paul Smith, Fall/Winter 2000

Michael P. Londrigan

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

Paul Smith is a world-renowned English designer who has created numerous collections over the years. Paul Smith has built a global empire covering women’s wear, children’s wear, accessories, and menswear. His menswear collection of fall/winter 2000 will be examined while comparing and contrasting his unique style to events in the world that were having an impact on fashion.

Versace, Fall/Winter 1997 Couture

Tessa Maffucci

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

In July 1997, Gianni Versace presented his final couture collection at the Ritz Hotel in Paris just days before he was murdered. The theme of his final show seemed eerily prescient. Many of the models were dressed in black and several of the pieces were adorned with the motif of a Byzantine cross. Even a wedding look, worn by Naomi Campbell, hinted at feelings of the occult. Yet this final haute couture collection was a continuation of the subjects and details he had explored throughout his entir

Nina Ricci Couture, Fall/Winter 1990–1991

Hayley-Jane Mazières

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

The historical Parisian couture house was founded, in 1932, by the Italian-born designer Nina Ricci, who soon became the elegant Frenchwoman’s favorite with her romantic and feminine garments. These differed from the sleek creations of such designers as Gabrielle Chanel and Madeleine Vionnet. In 1963, Gérard Pipart, who had previously worked at Chloé and had been the first designer to propose a modern and refined ready-to-wear, was appointed at Nina Ricci, where he would remain for more than thir

Vivienne Westwood, Red Label, Fall/Winter 1999

Lucy Moyse

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

Quirky, colorful, and colliding: with its juxtaposed styles, influences, and prints, Westwood created a discordant harmony in her fall/winter Red Label collection of 1999. It was the sixth collection that Westwood had produced for her Red Label line, and it was a rapid departure from those of other designers that season. Among Westwood’s peers, the key trends were plain fabrics and creamy, muted colors; Westwood clashed brights, checks, and prints. In contrast to the clean, understated, minimalis

Valentino, Fall/Winter 1990

Laura Peach

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

Valentino’s collection for fall 1990 celebrated the designer’s thirtieth year of working in fashion. The decadent overtones of the looks followed the opulent fashions of the previous decade and the luxury that Valentino had become known for. Gold lamé tiered skirts, jeweled sheer tops, and egret feather bodices all appeared on the runway. Certain looks borrowed motifs from Baccarat crystals, a partnership-type trend that would continue in fashion through the decades to come. Several dresses in th

The Chanel “2.55” Handbag, Fall/Winter 1995

Julia Rea

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

Since its introduction in February 1955, the “2.55” handbag has formed an integral and enduring part of the House of Chanel’s stylistic vocabulary of accessories. Its recurring role as an immediately recognizable and iconic symbol of both the brand’s unique heritage and contemporary identity is a rare example of a fashion object that embodies a contradictory blend of permanence and continuous renewal. By examining the historical context of the 2.55 bag through the lens of a contemporary version,

Valentino, Fall/Winter 1992

Rosily Roberts

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

Valentino’s fall/winter 1992 collection, designed shortly after his thirtieth anniversary in the fashion industry, draws on both the history of Western dress and clothing from China and Japan for inspiration. The dramatic silhouette of his 1980s lines has disappeared, and he is allowing for a greater exposure of the model’s body as he creates a collection out of luxurious materials that is rich with detailing. The timeless elegance that he was so well known for by the 1990s continues to appear in

Valentino Couture, Fall/Winter 2000

Rosily Roberts

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

In 2000, Valentino celebrated forty years in the fashion industry with a series of events and a special display of his previous designs. This collection, created in the midst of this period of self-reflection and celebration, is a witness to that. There are clear references among the garments to previous designs and the fashions of the previous century, which Valentino looks to for inspiration. His fall/winter 2000 designs are slimmer and more revealing than those of the 1980s, displaying more of

Fendi, Fall/Winter 1985

Alexis Romano

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

By the time of Fendi’s fall/winter 1985 collection, the brand was an important feature of the globally renowned, flourishing 1980s Italian fashion landscape, yet it also retained its original status as one of the traditional accessories brands that had helped shape Italy’s classification as a historic center of artisanal, high-quality craftsmanship. Directed by Karl Lagerfeld, who had been at the helm since 1965, and in keeping with Fendi’s heritage and identity, the thread throughout the collect

Ungaro, Fall/Winter 1999

Vanessa Semmens

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

Ungaro’s fall/winter 1999 collection was a departure from the designs he had been known for in the 1980s and early 1990s. It had more of a hippie feel than his previous collections; however, it still had the luxury that was associated with the brand. Ungaro’s show was judged to have successfully achieved a balance between commerciality and the craft of the couturier.

Ungaro, Fall/Winter 1987

Vanessa Semmens

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

The major trend for fall/winter 1987 was short, skintight dresses and low necklines. Designers crafted garments that emphasized women’s bodies, and “Emanuel Ungaro in Paris, for example, presented the most blatant of sexy statements with panache, wit and skill,” according to journalist Carrie Donovan. Ruching, ruffles, and frills were prominent. High necklines abounded: Ungaro employed these as design features as he liked to emphasize the graceful shape of a woman’s neck.

Versace Couture, Fall/Winter 1990: “Marilyn” Sequined Trousers

Rebecca Straub

Source: Fashion Photography Archive 2015

Article

In the early 1990s, as fashion moved into the realm of popular entertainment, stars plucked from the world of pop, supermodels, and British royalty all wore Versace. Their visibility gave image to the luxe lifestyle the brand came to connote. The man at the helm of this fashion juggernaut, Gianni Versace, with his enviable lifestyle and celebrity clientele, came to embody the ideals of the house he worked hard to open in 1978.In examining a look from Versace Couture of fall/winter 1990—a pair of

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