Luxury label Lanvin goes to the street for fashion

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Though top-end French label Lanvin rhymes with luxury, house designer Alber Elbaz takes his inspiration from real people in the street -- not celebs.

(AFP) -

Though top-end French label Lanvin rhymes with luxury, house designer Alber Elbaz takes his inspiration from real people in the street - not celebs.

"We're not stars," Elbaz told AFP as he posed with US rappers Pharrell Williams and Kanye West, and British rock star Carl Barat, all on hand for Lanvin's autumn-winter men's catwalk show Sunday, one of the top events on the four-day Paris men's calendar.

"That would be a great danger. We could lose all links with reality," added the diminutive Israeli-US designer.

The collection designed under his direction by Dutch stylist Lucas Ossendrijver "came from inspiration not in exotic places but in the street, in daily life", he added.

Shown by three dozen models with slicked-back hair who marched briskly to the thump of a techno beat, Lanvin's new line included flowing coats and slim and wide trousers in a stunning palette of colours - as well as a wide waist-cincher, a little like a corset or weightlifter's belt.

"We had a friend who wore one because of back problems when we were working on the collection," Elbaz said. "It's as simple as that."

Lanvin, which along with Dior and Belgium's Raf Simons are often viewed as the most influential menswear designers showing in Paris, won a huge ovation from the crowd attending Sunday, the last day of Paris Men's Week.

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