The product-heavy collection was well made but lacked originality and sophistication


It was quite hard to make sense of what went down the catwalk at Poiret . The show opened with a slinky, satin dress featuring nylon tubes, which was dangerously reminiscent of what John Galliano has recently done for Margiela Artisanal. There were also deconstructed pieces in evident homage to Issey Miyake, followed by some fluttering outerwear and luscious draping à la Alber Elbaz-era Lanvin and more bias cut and flou.

The collection was a lot to digest but was certainly well made and came in lovely painterly hues. The problem with Poiret, and one that creative director Yiqing Yin needs to solve together with management, is this: What to do with the brand’s heritage? Paul Poiret was a fierce exoticist who by looking at Oriental costumes freed women and drove innovation. He also went bankrupt rather quickly.

And this collection lacked his sophistication and daring. A name like Poiret cannot be used as an empty vessel for whatever vision.