Monique Lhuillier: I really wanted to infuse femininity in a relaxed way

 Eveningwear is a somewhat templated category that responds to wearers’ specific festive (sometimes once-in-a-lifetime needs), rather than quotidian ones. 

One of the ways Monique Lhuillier is adding a sense of newness to her designs is by taking the dream on the road, and shooting the collection in romantic locations that complement her soft, feminine aesthetic. This season her gown stopped traffic on the canals of Venice. Shooting looks in gondolas is not something the designer will forget.

“I really wanted to infuse femininity in a relaxed way,” said the designer. “I feel like my girl wants to feel a little more carefree.” Seeing the clothes in situ helps communicate that feeling. Shorter lengths do the same. Some of the leggy looks take the form of asymmetric short-in-front, long-in-back dresses. An opera coat over a mini is another interesting option, not only in terms of silhouette, but in versatility, as it could be worn separate from the dress, which suits this moment. “People are looking for pieces that they can wear a few times,” says Lhuillier. “It’s not just for one wear, I’m hearing that more and more.

This spring collection includes a tulle dress with gold sequins that fade into silver. It’s a reimagining of a design worn by Mandy Moore to the 2011 Academy Awards, and is another example of how designs can have more than one life.