Jean-Paul Gaultier turned the runway into a lawn tennis court on Wednesday for his spring-summer 2010 collection for the luxury brand Hermes as the Paris ready-to-wear week drew to an end.
Despite their sweatbands, his languid girls did not look as if they intended to even perspire in their elegant cream knife-pleated skirts, which came in all lengths, from short and flippy from a dropped waistline to ankle-brushing maxis fastened like kilts.
Think Suzanne Lenglen, the graceful French tennis superstar of the 1920s, rather than today's muscular, grunting athletes.
Models wore long-line jackets reposing gently on their shoulders, with sleeves dangling free, or had stripy cardigans knotted at their waists, and toted streamlined sports bags with racquets poking out.
V-necked cricket jumpers and bermuda shorts were also part of the sporty look, while the likes of a navy halterneck gown split down the back or a coffee frock pleated across the front were presumably for post-match celebrations.
The house's hallmark leathers, in ox blood red, were worked into knee-length skirts and cardigans combined with creamy knits.
Marc Jacobs at Louis Vuitton also gave a sporty twist to his luxury-end streetwear with cyclists' shorts in silver lame, micro-mini dresses over leggings cropped at the knee and fringed denim jackets in shades of orange.
Tweedy suit jackets with big pockets and others with elasticated waists were paired with military-styled pants.
His favourite accessory was the backpack, which came adorned with furry animal tails, or was even incorporated into a denim jacket.
Explaining the inspiration for his collection, Jacobs said: "We decided to do something real and look at the clothes people wear in the street and in urban landscapes, things like army clothes, utilitarian clothes, jeans, parkas and wind breakers. And then, of course, we heightened it to a place where it became entertaining for all, which is what fashion is all about."
For his spring-summer collection, Kenzo's Antonio Marras imagined a trip to the remote corners of the Sahara as explored by adventuress Freya Stark and recounted by novelist Paul Bowles in "Under the sheltering sky."
Models wafted down the runway in airy sarouels, mixing stripes and squares, or in a delicate mosaic print, in browns and blues on brilliant white, all fluttering ties and obi sashes.
Washed out blue batiks and indigo and white Madras cotton checks were turned into slouchy jackets, belted over slim pants or shorts with turn-ups.
Military-styled khaki jackets with epaulettes and drawstring hems and trenchcoats with rough rope belts, sleeves scrunched up to the elbow, looked practical for a sandstorm.
For a more feminine look, he offered off-the-shoulder peasant blouses in broderie anglaise and a chiffony camouflage print sprinkled with sequins and shiny peacock blue sequinned harem pants.
His finale of sarouels and turbans in vibrant shades of turquoise, purple and magenta evoked the traditonal costumes of nomadic tribes like the Touaregs.Reuse content