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Close to the Body Is Close to the Heart for Paris Designers

October 25, 1985

Paris ready-to-wear designers sent their new spring fashions down the runways this week, and their message was clear. Clothes are uncontrived, clear of excess and cut closer to the figure.

For some designers--Claude Montana among them--close means body-hugging. Montana translates cyclists' shorts to street wear.

Sonia Rykiel swathes the silhouette with feminine, fluid knitwear. Her spring trousers have an easy fit, her skirts often graze the ankles.

Thierry Mugler's usual body-revealing styles have an unexpected softness about them for spring.

Karl Lagerfeld adds a peplum pleat to the fashion vocabulary of the Chanel collection he has designed for several seasons. And he makes his impression of the "New Look" of 1947--a dress silhouette that binds the bodice, accents the waist and often ends with a full, ballerina-length skirt--a highlight of his own Karl Lagerfeld collection.

Paris fashion upstarts of recent seasons--Jean Paul Gaultier, Rei Kawakubo of Comme des Garcons and Yohji Yamamoto--continue on in their separate rhythms. But Kawakubo and Yamamoto's designs appear to be more attuned to the female physique than in recent seasons.

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