By toning down his aggro-dark effects and embracing a new serenity, Rick Owens let rip the elegance at the core of his underground muse. And it made for his most brilliant collection in seasons.
The procession was led by romantic heroines in graceful floor-sweeping dresses often paired with cutaway vests, their slick hair topped with hair ornaments made of horn, which, along with tight bangles, recalled Owens’ recent interest in tribal themes.
As the show progressed, it grew into a tantalizing tango between the designer and French haute couture: sculpted leather jackets, coats with stiff funnel collars, short cocktail dresses with bunched effects at the back, strapless gowns, and draped numbers à la Madame Grès. Even the fantastic footwear—high-heeled sandals with tufts of tulle climbing up the legs—hinted at coquetterie, a word seldom associated with the designer’s work.
The wonder of it all is that the Rick Owens woman kept her idiosyncratic mystique throughout. Maybe because the designer stuck to his signature palette of black, white and taupe, or perhaps because most of the long dresses were cut in crisp, unconventional fabrics. What is clear is that Owens, always something of a magician, performed his magic again tonight.