June 28, 2013 Paris
This collection marked something of a change for Elie Saab: To put it plainly, he seemed to be courting the youth market, not only by introducing shorter skirt lengths and freer silhouettes, but also by giving a bit more edge to his looks. The most surprising pieces here were abbreviated silk/cotton dresses with a spiderweb of suggestive cutouts—a step out for Saab. Elsewhere, he pulled the cutout theme back into his signature aesthetic by applying it to slinky gowns in black lace or tomato-red silk. The cutouts were only one example of the emphasis on the graphic—some of Saab's punchiest looks were in stark black and white, like the asymmetric white minidress with its slash of black. The flip side to the graphic were the many sculptural flourishes, in particular the capes and bell-shaped sleeves. This motif was more predictable from Saab, and predictably, he executed it well. The standout here was a white bootleg jumpsuit with a floor-length cape—a garment that captured some of the collection's youthful joie de vivre without stooping to look anything other than entirely grown-up.
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