Open Thread: This Week in Style News

11

Elodie Chapuis

Each week, the Open Thread newsletter will offer a look from across The New York Times at the forces that shape the dress codes we share, with Vanessa Friedman as your personal shopper. The latest newsletter appears here. To receive it in your inbox, register here.

Greetings from Paris, where the couture shows have been going on for the last week and it has been raining, on and off, the entire time.

Wait, you ask — couture, that most ancient and expensive part of fashion, where clothes are made by hand to order — is still happening? Isn’t that awfully retrograde? Why should anyone who isn’t one of the few hundred couture clients around the world care?

Partly because it is a way of preserving a traditional form of know-how, employing a host of skilled artisans whose techniques with a needle and thread are truly eye-popping and are currently being passed down to a new generation of “petites mains.”

And partly because it is, as Maria Grazia Chiuri, the artistic director of Dior, told me before her show, a “lab” for a designer to experiment with ideas and techniques that then may trickle down to the ready-to-wear, which then explode out to the mass market.

Source: The New York Times