Haute couture ateliers make gorgeous dresses, we get it. Armani Privé is no exception, but for the spring 2013 collection, the designer showed his prowess in men’s tailoring and opted to diverge from the typical showing of gown after gown, presenting a line full of pants. Of course there were still dresses and gowns—what haute couture show would be complete without them?—but the bulk of the line consisted of pantaloons.
Sending us on a Turkish adventure, Mr. Armani styled and designed dresses to be worn over pants—which Alexis Mabille showed earlier in the week –with prints and patterns that seemed perfect for perusing a market in Istanbul. Models adorned with fez-meets-cloche hats paraded these pants, which were fitted through the thigh and slightly flared were paired with beaded shoes, down the runway. Chevron and checkered prints created sleek pant suits that were a far cry from the Hilary-like pant suits; pencil skirts with precisely cut jackets made satin look cool again; and halter top striped dresses with flowing skirts perfect for a desert dinner date. Red carpet worthy gowns that exuded elegance and beauty rounded out the collection, and over-sized cylindrical broaches bejeweled many of the garments, adding bits of flair to the jackets, dresses, and tops.
Already straying from the norm of the other haute couture collections, Armani Privé went all out and all in. The biggest risk—and most intriguing—of the collection were the knee-length shorts with matching, billowy blouses that only the most daring could pull off. The look at first seemed all wrong but with the blink of an eye, it all made sense. The use of the bright orange and red instead of the cooler, subdue palate of grays, blacks, and purples made these statement pieces—but the tailoring made them haute couture. By going back to the 1950s and using an exotic locale as inspiration, Armani Privé created a line that a stunned and would make any wearer feel like part of a Bond movie. What lady wouldn’t want that?