JC de Castelbajac
January 16, 2014 Paris
Among the bread-and-butter turtlenecks and tunics, there was a fair amount of novelty: matelassé quilting on a jacket stitched to reveal a face, trompe l’oeil touches on jacquards, and T-shirts and removable layers designed to enhance silhouette (collar flaps) and texture (an alpaca bolero) alike. Beyond those details, it was impossible to miss the "smocking" technique in which braided panels appeared seamlessly integrated into the fabric. Apparently, de Castelbajac's team is especially proud of this design element, perhaps because it underscored the brand's continued pursuit of originality—no easy feat after all these years. But then you look at the muted rainbow coat with its sawtooth edges or the maxi poche (oversize pocket) sheath and you realize that everything old can, in fact, look new again.