Julie de Libran based her Spring collection for Sonia Rykiel on the bivalve’s many qualities. Its tough exterior appeared as a print on an oversize silk smock. Its luminous nacre inspired her charmeuse evening dresses. And its precious pearl was used as embellishment on many pieces, from knit dresses to a tuxedo suit. That’s a lot of attention for a little mollusk, surely more than it deserves, though the pearl-trimmed sweater dresses are a natural fit for this house.
When De Libran arrived three years ago, she put on her shows in Rykiel’s famous Boulevard Saint-Germain store. De Libran’s talents haven’t changed, but the circumstances around her have. Now she’s showing in the positively cavernous space of the École des Beaux-Arts, and she’s been charged with creating a full Sonia Rykiel wardrobe. That’s an ambitious project, one that De Libran is more than capable of, judging by the smart trenches and cool jeans that came down tonight’s runway.
The Rykiel management could reconsider the original formula and let De Libran specialize in what makes Rykiel unique.