August 25, 2016
When we think about New York, the first thing that comes to mind is the roaring 1930s; the romantic old hollywood glamour, sequin column dresses (and an equally sparkling cocktail to match), the joy and laughter which made up the great wall of escapism and of course, the glistening hope concealed deep within such a promising grand city. Elie Saab definitely was on the same page as us, citing good ol’ 1930s New York as his inspiration behind his 2016 Fall couture line.
We witnessed Elie Saab’s usual grandeur and femininity being taken up a notch with the fusion of an inimitable rich Lebanese flair, with the culture and influences from The Great America. We could already picture the time where countless Americans and immigrants put on a brave face, flocking through downtown New York as jazz served as a feel-good background tune as the sultry evening dresses made its way down the runway. We love the motif of the iconic crown-shaped Art Deco Chrysler building, which made its appearance on a couple of gowns. There’s really nothing more symbolic than the architectural facade of the landmark, which fundamentally encompasses such an era. The combination of star-bust ornamentations, lush velvets and gold-thread embroidery is more than enough to channel the glow of a stunning Golden Era showgirl. Power shoulders staged a strong comeback entrance, with it’s date by the arm: a deconstructed peplum tux suit, which was a breakthrough from Elie Saab’s standard lady-like, high-slit dresses. What really caught our eye was the lavish accentuation of bird and floral motifs, which seem to address the designer’s personal sentiments regarding freedom and flight, directed at his own migration to New York from war-torn Lebanon in his early years. The fact that we’ve transported inside Saab’s world of Middle Eastern nostalgia and pilgrimage through a series of evening gowns really says a lot about the designer’s grip on his audience.
It took a lot for us to regain our composure when we saw ‘kiddie couture’ making its first appearance on the Paris runway. Elie Saab sent adorable little girls in couture gowns which matched the adult versions gliding by their side. It’s nice to see mommy-daughter fashion making it’s debut onto the runway, and we think it’s safe to say that the risqué décolleté and sexy bare backs we saw on the ladies did not see the light of day for the little angels.
Cover image from @eliesaabworld’s Instagram.