Elsa Schiaparelli and Guy Bourdin. They lived decades apart, had breathed different influences, came into fashion at different times. And yet, Bertrand Guyon choosing them both as muses felt quite natural. After all, they did have things in common: an unapologetic love for bold colours, a flair for excess, a way of living within their own otherworldly fantasies.
And so the French designer merged both influences in a well-balanced act. Schiaparelli’s hand motifs were this time embroidered into 60s inspired A-line mini dresses (alluringly worn with thigh high boots). Shocking pink was associated to emerald red, Bourdin’s fetish colour. Draped chiffon blouses took a bit of a 70s turn. But all was not historicism. On one instance, Guyon dared try his hand at a pink bomber jacket. It felt adventurous and left us wanting more of that street edge. After all, if Elsa Schiaparelli was alive today, wouldn’t she be playing on that kind of inspiration? Instead, we got a series of chiffon evening dresses, one of them a reinterpretation of the famous 1937 lobster dress made in collaboration with Salvador Dali. Still, they felt fresh and wearable, which is what the brand has been particularly good at achieving since its relaunch. And even if some of the heavier pieces were still there (architectural brocade jackets, I’m looking at you), it all felt noticeably lighter. It is clear that Bertrand Guyon is progressively getting comfortable in one of the most difficult couture houses to appraise. If only for that, his collection should be applauded.