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A Meadow of Wildflowers

"London is a riddle. Paris is an explanation."
                               - G.K. Chesterton

Longchamp Spring 2016
Paris in the fall. It's the place and season for fashionistas in the City of Light to get a firsthand view of what lies ahead for spring couture. Three collections unveiled this week that stood apart from the rest were Longchamp, Valentin Yudashkin, and Moncler Gamme Rouge.

Longchamp began in Paris in the 1940s and is known for their luxury luggage, handbags, and accessories. But at the Lonchamp show, Artistic Director Sophie Delafontaine asked, "And here are the handbags, in the back, if you’d like to see them, too?" Wanting to prove there is more to the brand than just their famous bags, a few models were sent down the runway empty-handed (gasp!). Luckily for Delafontaine, their women's ready-to-wear for spring 2016 was the real star of the show.

Moncler Gamme Rouge Spring 2016
Russian designer Valentin Yudashkin's new designs were eye-catching to say the least. He strayed from his usual monotone black and introduced many vibrant colors into his garments. The blend of neoprene and mesh combined with unique silhouettes resulted in intriguing clothing with a sophisticated edge. Yudashkin explained, "If you do it from the heart, the customers will follow."

And now the best for last. Moncler was founded in the 1950s and is mostly known for their practical, yet fashionable outerwear that is perfect for wearing in the crisp mountain air. In 2006, the now Italian-based brand created their first high-end women's collection and named it Gamme Rouge (followed by Gamme Bleu for men).

It's no surprise that I was immediately drawn to the latest Moncler Gamme Rouge collection. It was designed by Giambattista Valli, who masterfully crafts feminine dresses adorned with flowers and intricacies with ease. Moncler prides themselves on technological research to discover the best materials for their outerwear and the fabrics seen on the runway in Paris today were no exception. Ivory white was the color of choice. Light, yet crisp silk organza dresses complete with flowers and exposed metal zippers were the real showstoppers. Fittingly, models walked down a catwalk that was transformed into a green grassy meadow full of colorful wildflowers. It was the perfect setting to accentuate the beauty that Valli created once again.

Fall always puts me in the mood to drink a lot of coffee and sew. I made two dresses that are perfect for this time of year. For the first I chose a beautiful stretch cotton twill with a floral landscape print and sewed black floral lace onto the fabric for some asymmetry. I used a solid black twill with chiffon sleeves for the next dress. The chiffon is an exquisite Rag & Bone material acquired from Mood Fabrics.

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