Maison Rabih Kayrouz Fall 2022 Ready-to-Wear Collection

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The MC Escher-ish staircase that forms the backdrop of Rabih Kayrouz’s new lookbook images says quite a bit about his current frame of mind. Coming off a collection that was informed by the romance of reemergence—more hoped for than actualized—this season Kayrouz was interested in sharp cuts and “cleaned up” silhouettes. “When I draw,” he said, “I usually draw in different layers, but what’s essential are the lines. I like this purity.”

Kayrouz achieved his sharp lines a number of ways; materials played a key role, followed closely by manner of construction. He worked with both vinyl and a thick jersey for his new tailoring. Adding seams at the front and back of the body of jackets and on the sleeves, gave them a graphic, architectural shape. They’ll cut a striking figure without dating as quickly as many of the eccentric suits we’ve seen on recent runways.

A pair of long strapless dresses that look destined for the Oscars red carpet had sculptural proportions, too. The basque-like curves at their hips are the result of pattern-making, Kayrouz said, not padding. Even grander were a pair of gowns whose volumes were achieved by stitching individual rings of different lengths of cord between two layers of tulle.

Other dresses reproduced those couture-like shapes, but rendered as they were in a techy water repellent taffeta, with ripcord detailing or the elasticized hems of athletic wear, they leaned more relaxed—not sharp, per se, but easy-wearing in a way that met Kayrouz’s “cleaned up” criteria. A third evening look in a deep shade of chocolate combined the sleekness of a jersey column with ballooning taffeta sleeves.

Kayrouz presented the collection in a Right Bank apartment overlooking the rue de Rivoli, across the river from his loft-like studio. Ikram Goldman was on a Zoom making an order for her Chicago boutique Ikram during my own virtual appointment, and later she wrote to me, “I love how Rabih can take an oversized piece and mix it with something narrow to create a luxurious, yet effortless and chic look.”



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