Poufs and prints, insane color, and wacky-chic accessoriesthese are the things that keep Lacroix fans faithful to his couture shows season after season. The question is always whether he'll manage to get something of that ineffable wonderment over in his ready-to-wear: In the past, there's sometimes been such a sense of dilution that the fizz goes missing. This time Lacroix pulled it off much better than in the last few seasons, adding delightfully idiosyncratic touches to a show that displayed some of his good old tricks in the way of bubbly shapes and cheerfully luxe color.
Take a cream cloque short-sleeved coat over a succulent gathered double-duchesse skirt, accessorized with a pair of black marabou armletswho else would think of that? From there on, the show concentrated on embellished brocade funnel-neck coats, patchworked gold lamé and dévoré velvet drop-waisted shifts, and brushstroke-print strapless cocktail numbers. It ended with a series of draped, swagged, bow-bedecked single-color satin dresses in bright fuchsia, orange, pistachio, and lime. As is often the case with Lacroix, though, it's the one that got away that stays in the mind most: in this case, the single black one-shouldered corset dress with an asymmetric meringue of a skirt that could only have come from his hand. Pretty, amusing, and just a bit quirky, it captured the spirit of couture in a way that a young generation of customers just might love.