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Suzy Menkes

Vogue International Editor Suzy Menkes is the best-known fashion journalist in the world. After 25 years commenting on fashion for the International Herald Tribune (rebranded recently as The International New York Times), Suzy Menkes now writes exclusively for Vogue online, covering fashion worldwide.

Elie Saab: Gypsy in his Soul

Loosening up lace to the sound of music

14 Марта 2016

Elie Saab, fall 2016 ready-to-wear
Elie Saab, fall 2016 ready-to-wear

A lace body suit, a pair of chiffon shorts and swaying threads of silk — could this really be the meticulous Elie Saab revealing the gypsy in his soul?

The designer has been relaxing his look for a while now and his haute couture earlier this year, inspired by India, was perhaps a prelude to this Autumn/Winter 2016-17 ready-to wear. Discreet polka dots embedded in the invitation offered another signal that the emperor of evening lace was loosening up. “I wanted it to be free,” said Saab backstage, after the Danish singer MØ completed her set.

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Elie Saab, fall 2016 ready-to-wear

Elie Saab, fall 2016 ready-to-wear

Elie Saab, fall 2016 ready-to-wear

Elie Saab, fall 2016 ready-to-wear


Although the lace looks were rooted in black, different textures and flashes of flesh played with the dark colour palette, to which was added purple suede knee-high boots or the same lush colour for platform shoes tied at the ankle with his signature fabric. It was the burst of full-on colour from the earliest part of the show that made the difference.

Surely this must be opera’s gypsy girl Carmen, passionately following her lover into the mountains, her dress first a tidy pattern of red and blue flowers on black lace, then heating up with an embroidered toreador jacket worked with skinny black pants — later a leather jacket slipped over a long dress, its colours mixing sunset red and puffy blue clouds.

Elie Saab, fall 2016 ready-to-wear
Elie Saab, fall 2016 ready-to-wear

The heart of an Elie Saab collection is in the handwork, and the polka dots on tulle or lace dresses were a lively form of decoration. The designer has allowed his woman to leave the glamorous world of after-six dresses for the cocktail hour and beyond, and by exploring the rest of her life, Saab has enriched his vision and his fashion universe.

The final outfits, re-creating the designer's quintessential lace in black leather, marked a transition to tough glamour.

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Elie Saab, fall 2016 ready-to-wear

Elie Saab, fall 2016 ready-to-wear

Elie Saab, fall 2016 ready-to-wear

Elie Saab, fall 2016 ready-to-wear


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