PARIS -- Erotica and Vargas girls. Corsets and crinolines. Bees, butterflies and meadow flowers. Sarah Burton's spring-summer 2013 collection, shown Tuesday night during Paris Fashion Week had all that and more.
The scene: The show was held in an arts space on the edge of the city. Behind the gold honeycomb runway were psychedelic-looking projections of flowers and insects.
The look: McQueen maximalism and extreme femininity. Sculpted bustier tops with tortoise cages. Honeycomb embroidery or honeycomb brocade wasp waist jackets with exaggerated hips worn with slim, mid-calf pencil skirts or skinny pants. Corseted and ruffled Little Bo Peep dresses with suspended hoop skirts. Light-as-meringue organza and tulle ball gowns with flowers trapped inside the gossamer layers. Crystal-dusted fetish boots laced over the knee. Tortoise cuffs and necklaces encrusted with jeweled bees. A palette of poppy red, gold, primrose yellow and black.
The verdict: Although there was a tremendous amount of technical skill on display, this collection did not have the emotional charge of some of Burton's past work. There was a theme but no story to grab on to, which made the clothes feel disconnected from reality, like museum pieces.