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Tsumori Chisato celebrates colour at Paris fashion week

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(Globalpost/GlobalPost)

Japan's Tsumori Chisato on Saturday feasted on colour at Paris fashion week while Australian Martin Grant oozed sophisticated chic in palate-cleansing black, grey and pastel pink.

Circular shapes and prints inspired by cascading water dominated at Chisato's richly varied collection presented amid the splendour of a Paris hotel ballroom.

"The main story is water and the beauty and colour of a waterfall I saw," she told AFP backstage.

Standing out among the most wearable looks were a silver grey wool coat with gold, black and plum geometric pattern and an Egyptian blue and red velvet dress and matching cape.

Grant, meanwhile, said he had experimented with silk chiffon in his collection, for which he restricted himself to a palette of winter colours -- grey, black and navy -- tempered with pale pink.

The collection featured sleek shift dresses and pencil skirts, offset with copious use of vertical ruffles along with full pleated trousers.

"It all starts with the fabrics," he told AFP backstage.

"Lots of wool, lots of silk, double faced (fabric) and silk chiffon (which is) new for me."

The colours, he added, were "stripped… back to cleanse the palate".

Elsewhere, fur and leather was much in evidence at French designer Jean Paul Gaultier's collection on day five of Paris fashion week.

A long black fur coat was belted at waist and worn with a choker necklace, while a long burgundy suede coat was cut away at the front from the waist downwards.

In another look, a long red leather coat was combined with a matching short tunic dress with wide cowl neck and boots.

The designer's iconic conical bras featured in high-necked leather tunic tops, teamed with flowing chiffon skirts.

And there was a continuation of the Rajasthan-inspired patchwork of his Spring-Summer couture collection seen here in January.

With Paris fashion week due to wrap up on Wednesday, the most keenly awaited show of the second half is expected to be Hedi Slimane's second collection for Saint Laurent on Monday.

His first show paid homage to Yves Saint Laurent but without really making his own mark.

On Friday, Raf Simons's second show for Christian Dior was equally keenly awaited for similar reasons and won an enthusiastic reception.

Trade journal Women's Wear Daily said Simons was showing more of himself with "splendid" results.

"While still respecting the codes of the house, for fall Simons flexed many of his own signatures more obviously than in his debut collection -- a move essential in the evolution of Dior as a storied house with plenty to say to the modern consumer," it said.

However, the highlight of the week so far has been New York fashion star Alexander Wang's first show for the illustrious French fashion house Balenciaga.

His new boss, Francois-Henri Pinault, chairman and CEO of the PPR luxury group that owns Balenciaga, praised the collection as "elegance, modernity, structure".

Wang, who also has his own label and is one of the hottest names in US fashion, was announced last December as the replacement for Nicolas Ghesquiere, whose surprise departure came after 15 years during which he brought the once dormant name back to the fashion frontline.

Paris is hosting nearly 90 shows and presentations of ready-to-wear fashion for autumn/winter 2013/2014.

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http://www.globalpost.com/dispatch/news/afp/130302/tsumori-chisato-celebrates-colour-at-paris-fashion-week-0