Oct 2, 2008
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McCartney's boyfriend jackets set to conquer next summer

Oct 2, 2008

PARIS, Oct 2, 2008 (AFP) - Boys beware, the girls are eying your jackets.

Stella McCartney's signature boyfriend jacket, a size too large with sleeves so long they have to be scrunched up to the elbow, is shaping up to be one of the wardrobe essentials for summer 2009 to judge by the Milan and Paris shows.

Stella McCartney
The British designer's own latest version of the look presented on Thursday had 1980s defined shoulders and elongated lapels cut so low that they flapped below the waist.

Models slouched down the runway with hands stuck in the pockets of their open or single-button jackets, over men's T-shirts or nothing, with not a bra in sight.

Her knitwear, superfine cashmere, also looked as if it had been borrowed off the boyfriend. But she added feminine touches like the spangly sequinned top just visible under an outsize soft grey V-neck worn with bare legs.

Catsuits were a big theme, with one micro-version reduced to just the top of a trench coat with a knotted belt. Her peacock shantung bomber jackets provided more of a cover-up.

For partying, she proposed body-hugging sheaths constructed from black bands, a hooded white crochet midi, and draped cocktail frocks in soft apricot and pink with matching clutch bags.

The avant-garde London-based artists Dinos and Jake Chapman provided the backdrop to the show, inspired by children's colouring books and made from felt, while Stella came out for her bow to one of her dad Paul's tracks, "Maybe I'm Amazed."

Veronique Leroy's collection for Leonard exuded sun, sea and sand. Models wafted down the runway in billowing long dresses, loose jumpsuits and voluminous harem pants in the house's hallmark printed silk chiffons -- just the ticket for lounging at the pool bar or taking a romantic walk along a palm-fringed beach.

Maxi-length fringes in matching prints dangled from necklines and hems, while piped bands of fabric emphasised waists and the cuffs of trousers.

From sunshine yellow, violet and vanilla, the show turned up the heat for a finale of hot fuschia organdy with a shiny cellophane finish.

Daniel Tribouillard, the label's founder, told AFP backstage that the house, which already has 110 exclusive boutiques in Japan, is now setting out to conquer South Korea.

"Korean women love what we do. We have just signed a partnership deal with LG Fashion Corporation which will improve our distribution and enable us to get the best locations for boutiques."

Franco-Swedish designer Marcel Marongiu's summer collection for Guy Laroche also had oriental appeal.

Kimono-styling came through in the origami-like folds which spilled from waist of the tightly fitting jackets of his elegant cocktail suits in slubby shantung.

His big blouses with full sleeves tucked into tight jodphurs also had a sense of drama.

Sophisticated chiffon cocktail frocks in cloud grey, and a bronze and olive print silk were accessorised with chunky gold bangles. On one a mock alligator strap holding up the front of a fragile dress was allowed to snake all the way down the back like a belt.

The only possible footwear was strappy stilettoes.

Croatian Ivana Omazic bade her farewells at Celine where she has been creative director for three years. Her place, in the musical chairs that fashion has become, will be taken by Phoebe Philo, who took over from Stella McCartney at Chloe before leaving to spend more time with her family.

Her swansong, which she said was inspired by "tribal dress and ornaments" was airy and graceful. Key pieces were white jersey dresses with waists circled by black ribbon, a white shirtwaister with bold brush strokes in black, ochre and violet, and a crumpled hand-painted linen skirt in graduated shades of indigo.

Masaii necklaces struck the tribal note in accessories. She was warmly applauded when she took a bow, clad from top to toe in black.by Sarah Shard

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