It factor. It's hard to define, but you know it when you see it, and it was on full display at Hakaan Yildirim's first Paris show tonight. Sitting front and center was Mert Alas, who now serves as Hakaan's creative director in addition to being, along with partner Marcus Piggott, one half of the world's most influential fashion photographer duo. Next to Alas were Eva Herzigova and Naomi Campbell. And on the runway: Daria, Natalia, Mariacarla, and the tippy-top of the current catwalk crew.
Yildirim made a big impression at his first show in London last season, so much so that he won this year's competitive €220,000 ANDAM prize. As a result, observers were wondering if the clothes would live up to all the advance billing.
The silhouette is still ultra-fitted, but more minimal than Fall's. Peplums and frills of silk-covered cord made comebacks, only this time there were a whole lot more cutouts, not only on minidresses, but also on second-skin catsuits. This collection will once again earn Yildirim comparisons to Riccardo Tisci at Givenchy. What felt new were the longer lengths—a well-cut black blazer over a narrow skirt with a trailing hem, or that same skirt again, but with a very hot (in all senses of the word), midriff-exposing, long-sleeve leather crop top.
The verdict: Hakaan's niche is quite narrow; he's designing for girls with waistlines as tiny as their bank accounts are big, but he's doing a bang-up job of it.