The critics adored the clothes and the spectacle of Karl Lagerfeld’s sexy barnyard romp. Cathy Horyn of the New York Times found it “completely charming,” and Godfrey Deeny of Fashion Wire Daily called it “the most sophisticated show this season, a sure hit and a tremendous moment of frolicking fashion in Paris.” British Vogue noted that the clothes were “much softer than last season,” deeming them “beautiful, delicate, and incredibly chic.” Most reviewers lusted after the accessories, like flower-adorned raffia handbags and studded clogs. “It was a bumper harvest of everything that is chicly tattered, beribboned, and gloriously made about Chanel,” fawned Style.com. (Many lauded the eco-chic slant as well: “Back to burlap and crocheting — simplicity,” assessed The Wall Street Journal. “Except it’s not, because it’s Chanel.”) Rather than taking the theme over the top, “Karl Lagerfeld celebrated country life with wit, audacity and loads of style,” praised WWD. In all, “not since the banks busted their credit ratings has a runway collection expressed such a fashion joie de vivre and a dizzying desire to buy,” concluded Suzy Menkes of the International Herald Tribune.
Watch a slideshow of the Chanel collection.
Yves St. Laurent
Stefano Pilati’s dual serious-and-sweet spring collection was a miss for most critics. Suzy Menkes of the International Herald Tribune called it “weird and not-so-wonderful,” finding the strawberry-shaped earrings, leather shorts, and unsubtle colors “real puzzles.” Many reviewers loved the more refined, office-ready attire but dismissed the flashier elements. “It’s rare to find a collection with so much clothing devoted to women seeking professional respect,” The Wall Street Journal intoned, before briefly touching upon the “distracting” strawberry patches, panty shorts, and visible lingerie. Likewise, WWD found the diversity of the lineup “a bit discordant,” but allowed that “[i]t made for an interesting and often strong journey.” Godfrey Deeny of Fashion Wire Daily liked it best, calling the show “an experimental exercise that resulted in fashion of great wit, and probably real influence.” But in the end “it missed the cohesion that a truly spectacular show calls for,” British Vogue assessed. Style.com concurred, noting, “in terms of a cohesive statement, [the two aesthetics] never quite seemed to relate.”
Watch a slideshow of the Yves Saint Laurent collection.
The critics deemed Phoebe Philo’s spring collection a confidently delivered success. “The show was clear, dynamic and had the straight hit of a fashion bullet,” asserted Suzy Menkes of the International Herald Tribune. In a week of “blindingly excessive” shows, “Ms. Philo was perfectly clear,” praised Cathy Horyn of the Times. “At the core of that accomplishment were clean, luxurious clothes,” declared WWD. British Vogue found the clothes “different … refreshing and energized,” while The Wall Street Journal lauded Philo’s prudent design sensibility: “Sometimes … you can tell when there’s a woman behind the label. The clothes covered the parts of the body that need covering.” Perhaps owing to such unconventional “covering,” lone critic Godfrey Deeny of Fashion Wire Daily saw “very little fireworks” and inquired, “What’s the French for underwhelming?” But although “that charge [may not] sizzle in the runway photographs … every young woman in the room felt it,” Style.com asserted.
Watch a slideshow of the Celine collection.