Louis Vuitton autumn/winter 2010/11 collection
Roger Vadim directed the French film, "And God Created Woman", which turned Brigitte Bardot into an international "sex kitten", back in 1956.
But it took fashion’s "American in Paris", the designer, Marc Jacobs, to create the clothes today’s “cougar woman” might actually wear, 54 years later, in his collection for Louis Vuitton, in Paris, today.
The collection killed-off the cult of the super-skinny teenager in a micro-mini, as a barometer of 21st century style.
Instead, corsets and halter-neck-dresses emphasised the voluptuous curves of Elle Macpherson, 46, Laetitia Casta, 31, and Lara Stone, 26, the fiancée of the British comedian, David Walliams.
Not a skirt showed a hint of knee; all were full, graceful and down to mid-calf or the floor, accessorized with elbow-length glove, bow-trimmed shoes with crystal-stack heels, and the new, neat “Speedy” handbag.
At a stroke, the collection, sounded the death-knell for the teensy-weensy, micro-minis favoured by the front-row celebrities, such as Alexa Chung, Daisy Lowe, Natalia Vodianova, and Pixie Geldof.
“Designers are always saying they’re going to do a collection for women, but then every girl on the runway (catwalk) is under twenty,” Jacobs said backstage, possibly the only man in the world who can make the midi-skirt fashionable again.
“I wanted a variety of ages and sizes. We set out to cast gorgeous women, women who feel happy to put their make-up on, get dressed up, get all their accessories.”
“It’s a bit old-fashioned, I know, but I think it’s nice for a change.”
The models paraded around the 16-jet fountain in the courtyard of The Louvre, to the theme music from “And God Created Woman.”
Although the music might have suggested a 1950s “retro” comeback, Jacobs avoided the vintage trap with fresh and unusual colour combinations, and a totally modern clash of fabrics, such as tweed with velvet, fur-trims on knits, and lace over rose-print.
Elle Macpherson, her 34C cleavage well to the fore, proudly led the finale parade of 54 models, in a rose-pink corset with rise-and-fall crinoline, draped in front to show silver lining, and revealing a gold lamé train, cascading from the back.