Arts and Entertainment

Patterns and materials at Paris Fashion Week 2016

Wednesday, March 9, 2016 was the conclusion of Paris Fashion Week, as well as the last day of fashion month. The clothes were all “ready-to -wear” and designed for autumn and winter of 2016-17. March 9 was the conclusion of Paris Fashion Week, as well as the last day of fashion month. The clothes were…
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Foothill Dragon Press

March 25, 2016

Wednesday, March 9, 2016 was the conclusion of Paris Fashion Week, as well as the last day of fashion month. The clothes were all “ready-to -wear” and designed for autumn and winter of 2016-17.

March 9 was the conclusion of Paris Fashion Week, as well as the last day of fashion month. The clothes were all “ready-to -wear” and designed for autumn and winter of 2016-17.

The “ready-to-wear” term refers to the idea that the clothes will be sold in stores eventually. The shows for autumn/winter styles happen in the spring. Many designers debuted newer fabrics and prints, while others, like Chanel, went back to their roots.

A key part of understanding the high fashion designs is looking at the most popular fabrics and patterns that each designer chooses. All designers choose important and well thought through materials in order to stay not only true to the brand, but also remain innovative.

Credit: Jenny Chang/The Foothill Dragon Press

Credit: Jenny Chang/The Foothill Dragon Press


For the fall winter season, Chloé has incorporated many sheer fabrics with floral prints. Chloé is traditionally known for its light, flowy clothes.

Designed by Clare Waight Keller, the brand typically has many sheer fabrics and light, feminine styles.

This season, in addition to staying close to their brand, they have ventured out into more chic “biker” and “punk” styles.

Keller describes the typical Chloé brand girl to have a “free-spirited, effortless attitude.”

This season, Keller stated her influence for the designs was Anne-France Dautheville, a woman who traveled through France on a motorcycle.

She encompassed the classic elegance, with a masculine twist. Florals and caftan, mixed with leather pants fit perfectly into this theme.

Almost all of the designs could be easily pictured at music festivals or even everyday errands.


Credit: Jenny Chang/The Foothill Dragon Press


Chanel returned to their roots this season. The designs by Karl Lagerfeld had a distinctly “mod” fifties feel.

The use of tweed was a clear indicator of returning to a more traditional look.

Tweed is a rough woolen multicolored fabric. It is considered a “chic” look.

Rather than having a message like some of the other designers, Chanel tends to focus on extravagance.

The “runway” for the show was actually just a mansion, with more traditional high-fashion feel.

Instead of going with any sort of clear theme with fabric, Lagerfeld chose luxury materials and patterns.

He used lace, leather, tweed, and pearls for the distinct high-class feel that they give off.

Chanel has always been targeted to the classic, fashion forward woman.


Credit: Jenny Chang/The Foothill Dragon Press


The Fendi collection, designed by Silvia Venturini Fendi and Karl Lagerfeld, had many fun elements, particularly with fabric.

The most standout fabric of the show was the faux furs.

The fur provided a perfect balance of classic elegance and modern day fun.

Blue and black faux furs were used in many different outfits, either as a collar or a jacket.

Other more realistic, traditional, looking furs were mixed in, adding an element of surprise to outfits.

Many younger girls could wear the furs introduced in the show to school with jeans and a simpler outfit.

They could also dress the fur up in a more elegant way for night events.

Faux fur is making a comeback, as Fendi was not the only designer to include it in their show.

Kenzo, along with many other designers, also added in animal prints and fur (none real).


Credit: Jenny Chang/The Foothill Dragon Press


Givenchy took a more abstract approach than other designers, adding in many complex patterns and fabrics.

Riccardo Tisc, according to Vogue, decided to take a look into the past to celebrate his tenth year as creative director.

The show used many animal prints, like snakeskin, to go with a more ancient theme.

Instead of the “fun” or “classic” brought in with other shows, Givenchy was serious and “mystic.” Instead of more basic patterns, Givenchy used Egyptian prints and symbols which appeared all over their clothes.

Tisc added in some black and velvet fabric to add to the eerie feel of the show and outfits.

Women might struggle to wear the pre-made outfits out and about, however individual pieces could be standout pieces in an outfit.

For example, using a scarf with the egyptian style print, rather than a dress.


Credit: Jenny Chang/The Foothill Dragon Press

Miu Miu:

Miu Miu’s show was filled with a diverse group of models, as well as fabrics.

Largely varying outfits and patterns were pulled together with denim, leading to a modern, hip feel.

“Dressing with what’s left. Nobility and misery!” exclaimed Miuccia Prada at her show. “I wanted it to be fun. I was afraid not to excite people.”

Prada used velvet, tulle, florals and many other prints and patterns in her collection.

While many outfits were purposefully made of the same fabric, small accessories and hints of color made them bold and interesting.

Of all the designers’ collections this one would be the easiest for women and girls to gain inspiration from. The denim look can be found in many stores and styled in endless ways.

The fabrics she used were classic, but also interesting and exciting, a perfect blend for the modern-day fun woman.


Valentino creative directors Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pier Paolo Piccioli always make a statement with their show and designs.

This year’s Ready-to-Wear Autumn-Winter 16 show proved more subtle than many others.

They decided to take influence from the modern dance and ballet movement.

“We always think fashion is cultural, not just about delivering clothes,” said Chiuri when speaking to Vogue.

“We want this show to be about living your moments, feeling each moment uniquely.”

To follow their dance theme, Valentino decided to use many dresses made of tulle fabric.

Tulle is a fine netting. It is often used to make ballet tutus. It adds a girly edge to many outfits. Off the runway women can wear tulle skirts or have tulle detailing on their shirts to add an ethereal element to their outfit.

–Emma Kolesnik

Disclaimer: We do not advocate for the body sizes shown in the images above. The images are done in typical high fashion design style.

Background Art Credit: Jenny Chang/The Foothill Dragon Press

Timeline Credit: Emma Kolesnik/The Foothill Dragon Press