Saturday, April 19, 2008

SATURDAY: Purple Predilection!

I love grapes, but not grape jelly. Go figure.

This fine Saturday is devoted to my first love: purple. Still loyal, after all these years. Purple has long been associated with power (royalty, in particular), passion, creativity, and mystery. Perhaps that is why it is such an entrancing color for clothing, and why a wardrobe flecked with bold violet shades screams for attention.

I have amassed some of my favorite looks for the upcoming season, with a particular focus on BRIGHTS, in keeping with the week’s theme. In the left hand column of CoutureCarrie, please find an addendum to this post consisting of clever complimentary couplings (yellow and purple, in particular).

If you prefer your purple like cough syrup (in small doses, that is), sample this teeny purple clutch by Kotur, available at A gem!

Reem Acra’s entire Spring 2008 Collection was delectable, with the most impressive array of rich purple hues I have EVER seen, and TRUST me, I’ve been looking (since about 1986, when I insisted on wallpapering and carpeting my entire bedroom lavender; I even talked my parents into buying me a purple bedspread and sheets!). This vibrant strapless Reem Acra dress [at upper left], complete with self-belt and corset detailing, is the GRAPE STANDARD for passionately purple dressing.

Coverage of the passion for purple this season would not be complete without mention of Balenciaga's lavender and white bias plaid broad-shouldered mini-jacket and skirt combo (at left). Though it has been a bit overexposed in the glossies, its grandeur and innovation are still worth noting. Bold shape, vibrant hues, and oddly alluring sandals make this outfit pop (I heard that it takes 45 minutes to get into and out of those gladiators, btw.)

Another pretty purple dress, with twisted bandeau empire waist and wispy, a-line multi-layer chiffon skirt, is pictured here at right, from the Gianfranco Ferre Spring 2008 Collection.

At Bendelisi, bold color wasn't enough; plastic pailettes were added to the mix, and the effect is stunning. The shiny circles cascade off this shift like feathers! The only trouble is, how to sit down without bending all the component parts of this lovely grape-hued frock?

Michael Kors did a GRAPE JOB on this ladylike belted sheath, with swingy chiffon skirt and demure sleeveless shape. This frock has a timeless appeal . . . though it encapsulates the Spring '08 floral trend perfectly, it also harkens back to the era of the housedress - when American women wore belts tightly cinched at the waist and full skirts as a rule.

The tie-dye effect was given a grownup glamour quotient at Basso & Brooke, where the prints shocked and awed this spring. The strapless dress shown here at the left is my idea of the PERFECT party frock - short and flirty, but not too tight. The sweetheart neckline and Grecian-style draping are the ultimate in figure flattery. Grab a bright clutch and throw on your most fabulous strappy stilettos and hop in a cab (or limo!).

The long asymmetrical look was made chic again [sorry, Tilda Swinton - that Lanvin dress you wore at the Oscars gave this type a bad name!] at Custo Barcelona. I picture this dress on a gamine gal for cocktails on the yacht in Nice, or the farmer's market in the Hamp on a sunny Saturday morn. Bohemian and glamorous at once.

Costume National took a more daring (and slightly less wearable, at least as a pair!) approach to the "violet femme" with this three-quarter sleeve jacket and shorts combination.

Photography Credit: All images courtesy, unless otherwise noted.

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