There’s always something spiritual, even sacred about Maison Rabih Kayrouz’s collections – it’s all about those poetic volumes, architectural lines and richness of textures. Coming off a collection that was informed by the romance of reemergence, Rabih Kayrouz was interested in sharp cuts and “cleaned up” silhouettes for this season. “When I draw,” he said, “I usually draw in different layers, but what’s essential are the lines. I like this purity.” Kayrouz achieved his sharp lines in a number of ways – materials played a key role, followed closely by manner of construction. He worked with both vinyl and a thick jersey for his new tailoring. Adding seams at the front and back of the body of jackets and on the sleeves gave them a graphic, architectural shape. They’ll cut a striking figure without dating as quickly as many of the eccentric suits we’ve seen on recent runways. A pair of long strapless dresses that look destined for the Oscars red carpet had sculptural proportions too. The basque-like curves at their hips are the result of pattern-making, Kayrouz said, not padding. Even grander were a pair of gowns whose volumes were achieved by stitching individual rings of different lengths of cord between two layers of tulle. Other dresses reproduced those couture-like shapes, but rendered as they were in a techy water repellent taffeta, with ripcord detailing or the elasticized hems of athletic wear, they leaned more towards a relaxed aesthetic – not sharp, per se, but easy-wearing in a way that met Kayrouz’s “cleaned up” criteria. A third evening look in a deep shade of chocolate combined the sleekness of a jersey column with ballooning taffeta sleeves.
Collage by Edward Kanarecki.