On Aura Tout Vu Couture Fall Winter 2014 Paris
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Disney's villains have been on everyone's minds recently thanks to Angelina Jolie's Maleficent, and a recent auction called "Le Mal pour Le Bien" featuring works from big names such as Chantal Thomass, Paul Smith or Francis Kurkdjian, all expressing their souvenirs of the sketchy villains of childhood. But for On Aura Tout Vu, fantasy has always been part and parcel of the Parisian couture house's identity.  

And OATV's tales, of course, are not Disney's tales. Livia Stoianova and Yassen Samouilov love to put their own spin, and take you places your wildest imagination couldn't think of. How else to explain the bondage-y masked merpeople sitting on clear plastic chairs on the very edge of the runway? Hans Christian Anderson never saw that one coming. While H2O (also known as "water" in the mundane world) was the main inspiration, one couldn't help but imagine these glamazons as grown-up and couturized versions of Elsa and Anna, of Frozen fame.

From the very first look, a terrific, sharply tailored trench coat, tightly belted and splashed with light blue "water" stains, it was clear that it wouldn't be just a poetic diatribe about water. Neat biker jackets, adorned or not, topped little dresses and solidified the reality of the ensemble. The fur work was delightfully discreet and executed with utmost technicity. A couple of softly pleated chiffon dresses, meanwhile, drove home the idea of flow embodied elsewhere in the padded petals of a pair of gowns. These were easily the strongest looks in the collection.

Wit and whimsy were ever present as a scuba mask bag complete with a tuba as handle, or the furry customized Aigle boots. And just when we thought their icy heroine had softened up, she flared up again, all fiery temperament and shooting icicles from her eyes (well, a customized pair of glasses, actually) or sparkling in a ball gown split down the middle, revealing a scintillating bodysuit. But for once, all of this was secondary to the clothes themselves, who were given plenty of leeway to shine. Take away feeling, this was a reminder of the sophisticated tailoring skills of the duo, and the polar opposite of the micro-mini-dresses and over-the-top Swarovski extravaganza that they are remembered for.

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