March 09, 2002 Paris
It was a shame, then, to see this show fall several notches short of the creativity benchmark set by Paris thus far. Clements Ribeiro said they'd been inspired by Lord of the Rings, which meant they'd followed the folkloric path already trodden by hordes of designers this season. They did picture-book flower appliqués sewn on to sweats, track tops, coats and skirts with blanket stitching. They got into pleating in a big way, in print skirts and plisse tops, and worked a new form of appliqué by cutting out raw-edged satin flowers and hand-sewing them to georgette. A small flash of their pioneering talent showed itself in cashmere knits with a version of their signature stripes done in bands of folky pattern. Shoes and boots featuring cut-out leaves of metallic leather were eyecatchingly sexy. Unfortunately, that wasn't enough to suppress the feeling that Paris expects more of them than this.