Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 February 2020

Paris Haute Couture Week: 22 looks to know from the Rami Al Ali show

The Syrian designer delivered a flower-filled collection in the French capital

Syrian designer Rami Al Ali delivered his latest haute couture collection in Paris this week, taking inspiration from that most evocative flower – the orchid.

For the spring 2020 couture season, and in a procession of 22 looks, Al Ali explored the glamour and mystique that shroud the bloom and its myriad iterations, seen as soft shades of blush pink, buttermilk and nude to lush, more exotic tones of coral, rose, lime green and turquoise.

With such a light and dreamy theme, Al Ali’s signature embellishment was given fresh life, as the bugle bead and pearl covering of shorts here, or the dense gold sequinning clustered on the hips of capri pants there.

He even nodded to his younger audience, by dialing up the raciness with a high-cut, rose body covered in gold beading, and worn under a huge sleeved cape. Tied with a bowed flourish at the neck, it is perfect for the likes of Beyonce.

The customary elegance of the house was much in evidence as a sculpted bias green sleeved gown with a beautifully cut-away back, or as a classic nude column gown, covered in a cascade of beads and sporting a fiendishly difficult folded neckline.

As a reminder of the sheer skill of his atelier, more folds followed, with double-faced fabrics rippling out from the neck, waist or hip in energetic (if technically demanding) explosions, such as a tailored strapless blush jumpsuit, with a froth of beaded folds radiating from the waistline.

Grand duchesse satin appeared as a softly folded, full skirted gown in nude and as something almost architectural in mint green. Elsewhere, plisse folds clung to the body, as a coral bandage dress with exposed corset, and in lime green, covered in gossamer flowers.

Silk tulle was scattered with precious handwork and caught in delicate, three-dimensional millefeuille or covered in pointillist flowers and layered into a huge skirt from hand-cut ribbons. The finale was great clouds of buttermilk tulle caught at the knee and waist to create something akin to a hanging garden, with golden tendrils reaching to the floor.

It was, in short, a charming and beautifully executed journey through Al Ali's version of a floral garden. Dripping with embellishment, and gleaming with decadent gold and silver, it spoke clearly to its audience, and if the vivid colours were a little jarring to the Parisian eye, it was a timely reminder that while Paris may be the heart of of couture, increasingly, the designers who create it, and the women who actually buy it, are from far further afield.

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Read more:

Balenciaga to return to haute couture after a 50-year hiatus

All the celebrities spotted at Paris Haute Couture Week so far

Paris Haute Couture Week: Georges Hobeika brings a taste of la dolce vita to the runway

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Updated: January 22, 2020 11:25 AM

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