Oct 2, 2007
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Vacuum cleaner inspires Issey Mikaye

Oct 2, 2007

PARIS, Oct 2, 2007 (AFP) - The gaping mouths of giant vacuum cleaner tubes dangling menacingly over the runway at the Issey Miyake show were a clue to the inspiration behind the collection for summer 2008 which designer Dai Fujiawa called "Wind".

Creation Issey Miyake collection spring-summer 2008
Photo : François Guillot/AFP

To help him he called on James Dyson, who harnessed cyclone technology to invent a revolutionary vacuum cleaner with constant suction.

The Issey Mikaye team stripped down one of Dyson's cleaners into its many component parts and copied them to create witty clothing which interacted with wind.

Nozzles, rubber connecting rings and the extendable tube were all adapted into sleeves, belts or pockets on all manner of quirky windcheaters, anoraks and hooded nylon and PVC rainwear.

Creation Issey Miyake collection spring-summer 2008
Photo : François Guillot/AFP

Overhead gantries agitated the tubes over the runway, pushing through welcome gales of air to make the clothes billow and cool down the audience sweltering in the tent in the Tuilerie gardens.

The house's hallmark permanent pleating was folded into diamond patterns like origami for dhoti pants in petrol blue, a sweeping emerald coat and turquoise trouser suit.

Fringed knits, waffled fabrics, stretch leggings and tunics with bright splashes of colour looked fresh and young, worn with flat pumps and short matching socks.

Dyson, who designed the decor and engineered the wind tunnel effect, had a front row seat.

Yohji Yamamoto, similarly dedicated to innovation, updated the crinoline in his collection shown late Monday, October 1st. Seen from the front they billowed out in the usual way, but from behind, they turned out in fact to be trousers.

"He has one eye on the past, the other on the future. He is exploring new forms," a spokesman said.

The Dutch design duo Viktor (Horsting) and Rolf (Snoeren), who are known for staging spectacles, toned down their act this season with a show full of pretty, feminine and wearable clothes.

The pair, who in the past have made their models walk down the runway weighed down by scaffolding, let the clothes speak for themselves.

Multi-layered dresses with shoulder capes, delicate black lace superimposed over pale rose pink, Pierrot collars which lifted slightly as the models moved, and pom poms dangling from belts had a Commedia dell'Arte feel.

The stand-up pleated collar of a white mini frock framed the model's face like an Elizabethan ruff.

Trousers were cut wide and topped with trapeze-shaped mini dresses.

In complete contrast to Viktor and Rolf's soft-focus image, Jean Paul Gaultier clad his fearless women as mercenaries in camouflage gear for hacking their way through the jungle. Some ditched their pirate hats for crochet caps or scarves with fringes which got tangled up in their hair.

"They are pirates because fashion is a form of piracy. That is people who take a little bit from everywhere, take things and mix them up," Gaultier said.

But it was a romantic vision of the military life, with epaulettes and fatigues embroidered like a Louis VX jacket and camouflage print corsets over asymmetric tulle petticoats.

French designers Marithe and Francois Girbaud deliberately chose the cool greys and blues of ice floes for next summer to draw attention to unpredictable climate change.

But more importantly they wanted to highlight the shortage of water in parts of the globe.

The ecologically-correct can be assured that not a drop of water has been shed to give their jeans that "stonewashed" shabby look. The ageing process for denim can now be achieved with laser technology, saving millions of litres of water and pollutant detergents.

by Sarah Shard

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