You probably know Felipe Oliveira Baptista best as the designer who scored the Lacoste job recently vacated by Christophe Lemaire, who's now at Hermès. Baptista has been showing on both the Paris ready-to-wear and haute couture schedules for a few years, but today's show, piggybacked onto Dries Van Noten's time slot and venue, likely had a healthy population of the fashion-curious.
Appropriately, Baptista's ideas were all about bodies in motion. He seemed to have stripped away some of his conceptual tendencies, for a clean and punchy look that toed the sexy-sporty line. He began with patch-pocket vests and leggings with panels of perforated leather before segueing into more experimental looks with streamlined cutouts and sheer overlays.
Results were mixed. A strange peplum belt-cum-miniskirt strapped over a jacket and bodysuit didn't make sense. But then came a complex look that layered a boxy cutout cropped top with a lightly flared and piped skirt over a tube dress; nutty as it sounds, it played quite coherently in its palette of camel, black, and white. The outfits in the second half of the show also required case-by-case judgment, with their trompe l'oeil tuxedo motifs and tailored sherbet-colored organzas. Nevertheless, when Oliveira hit his mark, there was a certain freshly considered, youthful elegance that clued you in to the potential his new bosses have clearly seen.