Giambattista Valli presentation in Paris channels 1960s

PARIS (AP) — Giambattista Valli’s 1960s-infused collection was the highlight on the second-last day of Paris Fashion Week, which concludes Tuesday with Chanel and Louis Vuitton runway shows.

Like Milan before it, Paris is undertaking an unusual fashion season for Spring-Summer 2021 because of the coronavirus pandemic. The nine-day calendar is flitting between 16 ready-to-wear runway collections with masked guests in seated rows, 20 in-person presentations and several dozen completely digital shows streamed online with promotional videos.

Here are some highlights from Monday.

GIAMBATTISTA VALLI

A retro 1960s aesthetic, in a mainly monochrome palette with flashes of his signature floral motifs and bows.

That was the recipe for Italian designer Giambattista Valli’s light and springy spring-summer collection, that was held as a presentation, instead of a runway show, owing to concerns over the virus spread in France. In Paris new measures were announced, including the closure of cafes and bars. Guests in masks waited outside the venue in the overcast autumnal weather, and — like during other Paris Fashion Week presentations — were greeted with sanitizer gel and extra masks.

The collection’s best looks were the simplest: A mini skirt-suit in Chinese white with two rough-edged panels forming the skirt. A shirt in Chinese silver hung down with loose proportions — unstructured, simple and clean — and had big gold buttons adorning four statement pockets. (Big gold buttons have been a theme this season in Paris).

Looks were given a twist with a large black bow tied at the top of the models’ heads. Other standout pieces included a white floral patterned mini dress with trendy mini Juliette sleeves. The shoulders were lopped off, giving the silhouette an interesting T-shape.

ANTON BELINSKIY GETS NOSTALGIC, POLITICAL

The Ukrainian designer credited with steering a rebirth in fashion in Kiev, Anton Belinskiy, presented his spring-summer collection Monday that channeled retro nostalgia in his simple, but conceptually-rich way.

The fashion scene in the Ukrainian capital began to thrive in the embers of a fading cultural revival that followed the 2014 Revolution. A hip, fashion-forward vibe followed the collection that was full of loose silhouettes.

A stiff, bronze fold over fabric suit jacket had an intentionally retro vibe.

A powerful and somehow sad print of a lone boy staring wistfully at his dog. Amid the nostalgia there was an image highlighting contradictions in gay rights for Ukraine: Two models, with one holding a child in her arms. Adoption is illegal for same-sex couples in Ukraine, while lesbians are given access to IVF and assisted insemination treatments.

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