March 02, 2006 Paris
Like many other designers this season, Kriemler found inspiration in the sculpted silhouettes of Cristobal Balenciaga. Coats in black mattelassé and ultra-luxe heather-gray vicuña had a cocoon-like shape. Whether or not Akris customers will embrace this backward-looking, forward-moving new direction remains to be seen. But Kriemler played it safer with such items as slouchy cashmere knits and pants cut two ways: slim and tapered or fuller with flap pockets. For evening, the designer rather puzzlingly eliminated structure, draping silk satin or crepe in front and back and occasionally leaving the sides of the torso uncovered. Unlike other elements of the collection, these won't make the leap to retail without some serious rethinking back at the studio.