Feb 10, 2016
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Hot-ticket catwalk shows at Paris Fashion Week

Feb 10, 2016

As newcomers rub shoulders with industry heavyweights and several major fashion houses await new designers, this edition of Paris Fashion Week -- running March 1-9 -- is sure to come with its own particular flavor. The current upheaval of designers affecting Paris, as well as Milan, is likely to steal some of the limelight in the French capital, as the industry waits for major Parisian houses Christian Dior and Lanvin to name new creative directors.

Following Raf Simons' departure in October, all eyes will be on the Dior catwalk show at Paris Fashion Week in March.Christian Dior spring/summer 2016 catwalk show. ©AFP / François Guillot

New names, up-and-coming labels

Buzz-worthy newcomers to the Paris catwalk include Dutch designer Esther Louise Dorhout Mees with her eponymous label Dorhout Mees. Started barely six years ago, the brand caught the industry's attention with its sophisticated and highly feminine collections crafting sculptural silhouettes. Other trademark traits of Dorhout Mees include geometric shapes, prints, luxury fabrics such as silk, and all kinds of structural effects created with clever folds and superimposed layers. The provisional schedule published by France's ready-to-wear ruling body -- the "Fédération française du prêt-à-porter" -- lists this hot-ticket show on Sunday, March 6.

Appearing in the official line-up for the first time last season, Koché -- founded by Christelle Kocher -- caused a sensation with its debut Paris show. Heavily influenced by street culture, this designer also draws inspiration from artisanal skills and techniques, and is keen to use new technologies. This gives rise to some stylishly eclectic and very high-quality collections. The label will be returning to the Paris runway in March to present its autumn/winter 2016-2017 collection.

Waiting game for Lanvin and Dior

Lanvin, the oldest Parisian fashion house still operating today, saw creative director Alber Elbaz step down in October. In the interim, Chemena Kamali, formerly of Cholé, has been drafted in to oversee the women's ready-to-wear collection. However, this temporary arrangement can't last forever, and rumors of a permanent replacement are intensifying. Stefano Pilati, who recently left Ermenegildo Zegna, is one of the designers thought to be in the running to replace Alber Elbaz. This remains unconfirmed by Lanvin, but fashion week could be the ideal time to reveal the Israeli-American designer's successor.

With the autumn/winter 2016-2017 shows just weeks away, the situation is almost identical over at Dior. If no announcement is made in the coming weeks, then fashion week could be a key time for Dior to reveal Raf Simons' replacement. In the meantime, Dior's in-house design team has been handed control of the upcoming collection, as was already the case for Dior's Haute Couture show back in January. Christian Dior's collection is booked on the Paris catwalk on Friday, March 4.

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