Monsieur Mabille is always on my radar for a simple reason and that is he is young, talented and technically pretty great! The young man knows his way around a dress and he is one of the rare breed of designers, young or old, who understand what it means to work in the selectively populated sphere that we know as Haute Couture.
The new Fall 2013 collection is a modern way of utilizing the age old techniques and abilities of the petit mains and ateliers that make up the work force of the Haute Couture. Yes, Raf, modern, not modern because the clothes have suffered for some ill-conceived idea about what is fashion, but modern because the mature ways of the art and craft of couture are translated to contemporary ideas of what 21st century should look like without techno fabrics. Inspirations aside, the clothes speak for themselves and the designer. The collection does not speak to a raison d’etre based on some esoteric philosophy or farfetched self-serving tripe!
Plainly said the clothes stand on their own, no matter what the inspirations or theory behind them might be; the clothes honor and pay tribute to an art form that is deservedly elite and highly undemocratic as they should be!
Monsieur Mabille provides drama, the proof of Haute Couture heritage, and trades off nothing for the sake of his own ego. His choices of material and embellishment are exquisite and his design ethic is pretty fabulous. No, his modern couture doesn’t seek to appeal to soccer moms or Beverly Hills housewives, his couture is for women who understand and appreciate what was once referred to as high fashion. His couture is the couture of a new breed of Couture customer who sees herself in possibly a narrow legged pant look one evening and a ball gown the next. Red carpets are not out of the question.
The long John Singer Sargent black velvet gown is beyond sublime as is the concrete jersey with pearls; those being 2 of my favorites but there are many standout looks. The palette is superb! The point is simple... I will take ONE Alexis Mabille against 10 Raf Simons for Dior!
P.S. I should say that I always harbored a hope that Monsieur Mabille would have been considered for the stewardship of the house of Dior