There was the merest snatch of “You Don’t Own Me,” Lesley Gore’s classic anthem of fuck-offery, on the Lanvin soundtrack today, but that was enough to cue the sense of triumph that must be powering Alber Elbaz in this, the tenth anniversary of his tenure at the house. There were the years when things didn’t go quite right, when the YSL dream job turned nightmare, when he felt like the eternal outsider in fashion’s sleek inner circle. But here he is a decade later, A-number one, top of the list, king of the hill, and somewhere deep inside, there must be a voice cooing to Elbaz that revenge is sweet.
The clothes he showed today certainly were. But not sweet like the pyramids of cakes that greeted guests at the after-show party. No, these outfits were suh-weet in their body-enhancing shape; their intense, delicious color; their feeling of wayward fun. Elbaz has always exalted womanliness (tonight he even confessed that he’d be happy to be considered a designer who reshaped women), and here there was a generous emphasis on the curve. Roundness too, especially in skirts that flared from hips.