With her first official on-calendar PFW presentation, Caroline Hu made a case for requiring some space.
Called “Reverie,” a short collection of 22 looks materialized the need for preserving a measure of personal distance, even from friends, family or lovers. That manifested in various ways, in layers of gauzy materials or theatrical pseudo-armor made of pillow-like shapes created using balloons encased in silky or lacy fabrics. Though some pieces were composed of as many as 40 elements, all were based on patterns in primary shapes—a square, a triangle or a circle.
The “mind gap” pneumatics were for dramatic effect, of course. Once those dresses hit the racks, they will have assumed their intended forms: deceptively simple bias-cut gowns with pretty lace trim, column dresses veiled by a ghostly overdress, experimental fringed knits layered atop each other like an oil painting, and floral prints extrapolated from photographs taken through a cloudy glass.
Elsewhere in this grand Haussmannian space, Hu continued exploring favorite themes, for example caging flowers between wisps of fabric, or taking traditional techniques and translating them into her own language. One white dress turned out to be made not of beading but of hand-crocheted plastic lanyards. That kind of sleight-of-hand—plus several covetable custom-ruffled Adidas Originals—makes Hu a compelling talent to watch.