I can't say that I'm an expert at conveying elegance. I can't even say it's something that I aspire to achieve. As with a lot of hasty fashion phrases that are over used and often misunderstood, I often question whether they are actually relevant or whether people use them for the sake of a phrase. 'Elegance' is one of them. I can appreciate elegance but I'm baffled when people expect me to epitomise it. For example, when certain fashion-lovers wrinkle their noses at anything that isn't supremely 'elegant' or rather, they tend to fear the unknown. Frankly I want to run away feeling all scared and small, when faced with the word.
However, Alber Elbaz seems to always portray that e word with a a quirk, a wit and his designs aren't simply there to just blind us into submissively saying 'Oh...that's so elegant!'. The pre-fall collection is a prime example of this unintimidating kind of elegance.
"Nonchalant, easy and very luscious." is how Elbaz describes the collection and I love how it is inpsired by female designers that made an impact in fashion in very different ways. When people think of the likes of Chanel, Lanvin and Schiaparelli, they will again conjure up that 'e' word and look back at them with a dusty nostalgia. But then they miss the beat and forget that these women were designing in a radical way and doing something quite different for their times, the equivalent of what people like Margiela is doing today. I guess people prefer to fantasise though and keep the past quite romanticised. Alber has taken the fantasy and the reality of these designers and interpreted them in this pre-collection, a taster for the main collection to come perhaps?