The first time I ever looked at a Carven collection, it was three years ago in a small showroom that had been set up in Paris to give editors an introduction to the label, which was making a comeback under the creative direction of a young unknown named Guillaume Henry. Today, it's being shown in a fairly large runway show at the Grand Palais, which is packed with important editors (Team American Vogue and W are seated across from me) and It bloggers (Natalie Joos, Susie Bubble, the list goes on.) It's striking just because it seems to be emblematic of the scale of change happening in Paris right now, where the talent is getting younger and the pace faster with each season.
Camouflage, which I've been seeing editors and bloggers wearing all season thanks to Christopher Kane and Whistles's more affordable version of the trend, just popped up at Carven. Here, they have a similar graphic, pop art quality. But they feel about a season too late. Instead it's the florals that stand out the most, they come as appliqués on dresses and on the backs of jackets and coats. The back, by the way, is still a major focal point for spring/summer, but this has usually been happening with cut-outs that show skin. Carven's take on the idea feels more unexpected and looks a lot more wearable. His black skirt suits, which had floral shaped appliqués in gingham (also trending for spring) along the shoulder blades, looked like exactly the sort of transitional weather solution to bridge the gap between winter and summer.