Balmain Turns to Military Sauvage for Spring 2010

Balmain Turns to Military Sauvage for Spring 2010

>> With Laduree macaroons catered backstage and Rihanna arriving half an hour late to sit front row, Daria Werbowy opened (and closed, and walked in the middle of) the Balmain show — her only show for the season — in the gilded, marbled ballroom of The Grand Hotel.

Christophe Decarnin's strong shoulders and ripped jeans were still present, but gone were the '80s. This season, “it’s warrior women and the military, with a mix of different times and a touch of Mad Max," he told Suzy Menkes; stylist Emmanuelle Alt's personal style was prevalent as ever, particularly in the pants-and-jackets combinations.

Since Decarnin took over at Balmain in 2006, the brand's ready-to-wear sales have double each season, according to CEO Alain Hivelin, and next season brings an eyewear collection with Oliver Peoples.  The brand's much-buzzed-about $2,000 jeans are priced as such because, Hivelin says, certain pieces receive hundreds of hours of embroidery or have been reworked up to 50 times before they hit retail.  But here's irony for you: Decarnin picks up his own wardrobe at army surplus stores.

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