This afternoon, Simone Rocha and her team decamped from London to Paris to present at Couture Fashion Week as part of Jean Paul Gaultier's guest designer programme. The collection – which was presented in front of a starry crowd that included Kylie Jenner and Lana Del Rey – beautifully fused the most iconic motifs of both houses.
The occasion marked the first time that Rocha has designed a couture collection – and this gave her the opportunity not just to try a new skill, but also to put a new spin on her own aesthetic.
The collection featured totally backless ballgowns, exquisite tulle creations, dresses with dramatic silhouettes as well as plenty of bows, froth, pearls and flowers (which are indicative of her label) merged with sailor-inspired accessories, underwear-as-outerwear, corsets and Rocha's very chic take on Gaultier's iconic cone bra.
"What I have really learnt from the haute couture experience is to slow down, which has been amazing because ready-to-wear is such a fast pace," Rocha told us back in December. "It’s big collections – and I do women’s and men’s – so I am going 100 miles a minute. What has been amazing about doing haute couture is the slow down and the reset, physically speed-wise, because obviously it is all done by hand, but then also mentally to reset design-wise has been incredible."
"I have been forced to take a step back and consider each garment internally, externally, really explore it, because haute couture is about specific fits. That interaction with the body has been an incredibly stimulating experience."
With this collection, Rocha followed in the footsteps of names including Julien Dossena of Paco Rabanne and Olivier Rousteing of Balmain, who have both played guest designer as part of Gaultier's programme.
For fans of both Rocha and Gaultier's work, this collection will no doubt be seen as a resounding success.
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