The semi-annual haute couture shows in Paris – held each January and July – are at their core a study in contradictions. Clients and their stylists simultaneously demand clothes that are ethereal and fantastical, but also sufficiently functional to be worn by actual women, often on the red carpet. This year, the global mood is somber, and yet the essence of haute couture is escape, beauty and pleasure. Dreams meet reality, and art meets commerce, and it’s the rare designer who can satisfy the needs of both. This year, that’s further complicated by The Reckoning: #MeToo fashion is a fluid idea at the moment, sometimes requiring the color black, other times being expressed through powerful colors and silhouettes – and every now then, the flash of a slogan or a statement tee. Oh, and did we mention that haute couture prices are stratospheric? So while the designs must flatter, they must also represent the highest possible craftsmanship from the atelier. A $200,000+ dress has to be a truly unique work of art.
We just got an insider’s view of pre-fall 2018, and it’s gorgeous! This week, Dandelion Chandelier was invited to attend the preview of Valentino’s Pre-Fall 2018 collection, held in New York City at the lovely Institute of Fine Arts. The classical mansion is in the heart of the elegant Upper East Side. But this collection has a distinctly cool downtown vibe. It feels fun, fresh and femme — and we think it’s going to fly out the door.
Here at Dandelion Chandelier, our phones have been blowing up for the past week with communiques about the new spring-summer 2018 merchandise that is already available for purchase. Begone, bomb cyclone! Away with you, polar vortex! The sub-zero temperatures, howling winds and snow drifts of January cannot keep warmer temperatures at bay forever. And as always, fashion leads the way, giving us the first harbingers of spring just when we desperately need them. Just looking at the new accessory collections has totally lifted our moods this week – the bags alone have us whistling a happy tune. Here’s a quick overview of what we’ve seen and what we love so far.
The Dandelion Chandelier Luxury Shopping List is our monthly overview of the essential items to have on your acquisition radar right now – what they are, and where to get them. We’ve done the scouting so you don’t have to. The key word in luxury shopping in January for many people is SALE (or soldes). In New York and London, the luxury department stores and powerhouse luxury brands have already put everything from fall-winter on deep discount (think 75% off). January 10 is the start of the sale season in Paris (it’s always the second Wednesday in January). If you’ve been stalking anything all season that’s totally fabulous but was priced well out of reach, this is your last chance to swoop in and grab it. We just got a note from one of our favorite sales associates that a dress we longed for that was originally priced at $19,000 is now down to $6,000; another has dropped from $11,000 to $3,300. Not cheap, but a whole lot more affordable – and they’re available …
The Dandelion Chandelier Holiday Hues Gift Guide is a series of curated lists of all-of-a-color luxury items and experiences for those who love a particular hue – or whose gift recipients do. It’s an easier way to shop (your eye can focus on just one shade in the visual cacophony). And when the presents are open, everything looks great together! What could be better for your holiday Instagram photos? Color-coding is clearly the way to go if you want to look pulled-together for posterity. We’ve explored red, pink, purple, blue, green, yellow, orange and black – to close the series, we’re concluding with a palette cleanser of no color at all.