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Montana, Miyake Offer Androgynous Selections

March 18, 1989

PARIS (AP) _ Claude Montana gave the starring role to enormous soft collars and corolla shapes in his winter ready-to-wear show Saturday that was an exercise in restrained beauty.

This influential designer switches gears regularly, moving from football shoulders to pyramid shapes but switching to soft lines in winter collections.

The clothes were not very feminine. But in just a few perfect shades and fabrics, they were so well constructed that the fashion world took notice.

For the early 1990s, futuristic Montana kicked off with a line of every imaginable subtle shade of blue, pairing slim ″petrol″ blue cuffed pants with glacier or deep blue belted peignoir tulip-wrapped coats.

The collars were outsized and oval or flounced in waves down the front. Sleeves were often flared like bluebells.

The most amazing toppers here - also in everything from sky or ice blue to aqua or spotted like ocelot - were in dyed sheared mink. It looked like iridescent plush, and appeared in handsome hooded boleros, ponchos or puffy shrugs.

Besides the important collar styles, Montana also went in for a tiny-busted silhouette with a swelling around the hips, which he dubbed a ″peanut″ shape, a sort of weird variation on the redingote coat or jacket.

Skirts didn’t appear often, but when they did they were long and straight, worn with tights in matching shades.

Browns from mahogany to peanut and charcoal or black with suggestions of other shades like green or rust completed the low-keyed color palette.

Japanese designer Issey Miyake as usual was interested in sculpting or shaping his fabrics in outfits that ended up looking more like art than clothes.

His ″zig-zag″ line of brown or blue knits turned out with pleated and pointed effects.

He gave stiffened square outlines and collars to some of his long raincoats, and the hats were folded into points to look like paper gliders.

This time his synthetic silk, Chinese lantern-pleated fabric was molded so that the models moved along jerkily like automatons.

Guy Paulin turned to the past for his inspiration, but it was nothing baroque or fancy, choosing rather the sleek vein of Greta Garbo. He began with a nice line of clothes inspired by Garbo’s film ″Queen Christina.″

In heather and misty blue plaids, knickers and long pants were topped by loose and long vests or short coats with natural shoulders. Full and long tweed skirts under full double-caped short coats had a nice easy trapeze style.

The low-key but wearable day clothes also featured good cable-knit twin sets with sandy tweed pants, off-white jackets with paisley linings, soft jersey pants suits in teal, taupe and rust.

Things were a lot more feminine at Balenciaga, as the designer Michel Goma featured a lot of dressy evening wear.

He offset the autumnal shades and androgynous tendencies seen in the rest of the day’s shows with a screaming-hot line of red taffeta lace and chiffon.

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