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Paris Fashion Week: Balmain and Nina Ricci provide high-impact glamour

After the storming success of Balmain’s autumn 09 collection which helped spawn the sequin and shoulder trend of the season it was always going to be interesting to see how the label would take new direction from the formula that worked so well.

Strong shoulders still featured on cocktail dresses, although slightly rounded and softer. Hemlines were to dramatic effect, either mini or maxi, with a thigh-revealing split.

Small sequins covered dresses and a pair of trousers that glistened under the lights.

Gold and black dominated with hints of colour, pillar-box red leather trousers and a raspberry jacquard jacket. Metallic silver and gold worked to strong effect in leather and contrast threading on tailoring.

Slash, sweetheart and deep ‘V’ necklines were offered. Pussy-bow blouses provide a demure look alongside tailored single breasted suits.

Highlights included the intricate sequin cocktail dresses and black brocade dress with gold contrast lace-up eyelet detail.

At Nina Ricci 1940s silhouettes were elegant and chic. Silk, lace and fur underlined a romantic collection scattered with floral references.

Powder pinks and blues, seal grey and salmon pink complemented silk evening dresses.

Shawl collar cardigans in red and grey were loosely belted at the waist with skinny belts. Floor-sweeping silk gowns paired with equal length coats gave evening gowns an edge.

Petal skirts mirrored the floral theme, that being said there were no prints, floral detail was in the manipulation of fabric as opposed to print or pattern.

Corsages were a running theme. A single corsage fastened at the waist, covered waistbands and appeared all over a strapless mini dress - a highlight of the show.

Corsages were taken mainstream by Patricia Field, stylist for comedy drama Sex and The City. The second film installment hits cinemas this summer and it appears the corsage is also set to return for autumn 10.

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