Christian Lacroix Brings Elsa Schiaparelli Back to Life

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With Paris Couture Week just a few days away, the fashion community is holding its breath in anticipation of two major revivals merged into one: The return of Christian Lacroix to the world of couture, and the rebirth of the House of Schiaparelli, the label of early 20th century Italian designer (and once-rival of Coco Chanel), Elsa Schiaparelli.

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Experienced couturier Lacroix will begin Paris Couture Week showcasing 18 ensembles designed to honor Elsa Schiaparelli. The timing is perfect — Tod's Group CEO Diego Della Valle is reviving Schiaparelli's label, which has been defunct since 1954. Like Schiaparelli, Lacroix's couture house went into liquidation in 2009 and since then he's focused his efforts on crafting costumes for opera and theater. Rather than this collection being his reintroduction into the world of couture, it's a one time deal, and according to Lacroix, focuses on celebrating Schiaparelli.

"Schiaparelli is such an inspiration for all of us," Lacroix said. "My wish is to reposition Elsa in the heart of her house and on the public stage where she once seduced the entire world." All 18 of the ensembles will be a modern reinterpretation of Schiaparelli's most memorable pieces. And this is just the beginning of the celebration of Schiaparelli's work: the company said that artists of different mediums would provide their own interpretation of Schiaparelli annually. Don't think that this collection could entice Lacroix to come back to the world of couture—he's said he's much happier doing costumes and that this collection will be it.

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