Continued from page 2

With its fetching cocktail dresses and hip-looking pants in teal silk, the collection was certainly a step in the right direction. Still, it must be said that there was little to distinguish it from the chic, urban fares that flood other runways worldwide, meaning that the label’s the main challenge _ reconstructing an instantly recognizable Ungaro look _ is far from accomplished.


A signature style is something the Italian designer has in spades.

Each season, Valli manages to push his trademark look forward without really touching the shape of the short, boxy cocktail dresses he built his reputation on.

This season, it was the fabrics that did the heavy lifting: In addition to his usual animal prints, feathers and furs, there were rich, flower-strewn brocades shot with Lurex and gorgeous ikats made from silk fringe which pushed the collection into uncharted territory.

Strips of burnished silver lame served as frames, separating out the patchwork panels of brocades, fluttering silks and zebra-striped satin. The eyepopping patterns on the swingy, square-cut coats in silk shag evoked the wings of a particularly exotic specimen of butterfly.

Valli made a grand entrance into the exclusive club of Paris’ haute couture purveyors last season, and Monday’s ready-to-wear collection had a very couture spirit about it: You could feel the work and minute attention to detail that went into every look.


It was like a neglige chic Paris version of the Valli collection.

A-line dresses in crisp Liberty flower prints _ given a sophisticated touch by strips of shimmering silver lame _ were paired with fringed poncho-sweater hybrids in nubby oatmeal yard which looked like they’d been knit by granny. Boxy little dresses were made out of colorblocked panels, some printed with rosebuds, others with what appeared to be T-shirts that had been washed to the brink transparency.

It takes a special girl to pull off an outfit that looks like it was made out of grandma’s old quilt, and Bruno’s ability to take what would normally appear to be dowdy pieces and infuse them with a uniquely Parisian bourgeois bohemian chic has won her legions of fans in France and a growing number in abroad, too.

One of a several French retailers who are popular Stateside, Bruno opened a boutique in Los Angeles last year.


McCartney delivered a collection fit for sexy sleepwalkers that was full of relaxed chic pieces that looked like they’d been made from silk sleepwear.

Models wore abbreviated slip dresses, like little nighties, embellished with fancy arabesque embroidery and slouchy pajama pants suits in printed silks.

Story Continues →