PARIS, France — For a realm of endless change, fashion can curiously also be a place where some things never change. At Jean Paul Gaultier shows, the designer's use of crazy characters, high French theatrics and a hugely codified sense of glamorous mischief are invariably present.
Along with this, of course, comes the adamantly defined "theme," which this season was, roughly, nature. It made for a lustrous palette of dark greens and intense browns rendered in shiny silks covered in feather embroideries or swarming wood prints. The silhouette was curvy and womanly, with a stress on the waist and the bosom, which came often sculpted with prismatic cuts.
All in all, it was a good collection with a level of craft that was strikingly high. But for having been the paradigmatic avant-garde designer, Gaultier has, of late, adopted a very conservative outlook. This is what haute couture requires, of course, and also what happens when time passes. Nonetheless, this was too much of a bourgeois Gaultier not to notice.