Space-age beckons as Cardin returns to Paris fashion week

Space-age bodysuits met fairytale bridal gear, outsized bell hats and rubber jewellery on Wednesday as veteran designer Pierre Cardin took Paris on a four-season tour of his fashion universe.

Returning after a long absence, the 88-year-old offered day two of Paris Fashion Week a ready-to-wear look for men and women largely stamped with 1960s pop and sci-fi futurism.

But Cardin's classical styles also got a look-in with floaty evening wear, earthy tweed jackets, and pastel patterned frocks that seemed more fit for an English wedding party than a trip to the galaxy's outer rims.

Opening the show just off the Champs Elysees, Cardin sent out twin his-and-her full-body suits in bold pink, with wire rings defining the knees, that looked plucked straight out of Stanley Kubrick's "2001: A Space Odyssey".

Followed a series in thick wetsuit-like fabric, also coming as his-and-her variations, in black, silver and purple and worn with visor-like shades and headbands studded with black rubber bolts and spikes.

Other bodysuits were worn loose and flowing, in shimmery bright pinks or silvers, gathered only at the ankles and wrists.

Wristbands, necklaces and ankle bracelets fashioned from bunches of rubber tubes - in eye-popping pink, orange or green - sprouted from the edges of black tops and pants, while the men's boots were studded with metal at the rim.

In more earthly fare, Cardin's young woman wore pop-coloured mini-dresses with froo-froo skirts of red or yellow, bursting out from beneath skin-tight, bare-shoulder silver tops, or A-line trenchcoats in shiny blue, orange or pink.

Bulbous berets or outzised bell-hats defined the look throughout, and bags were supersized too, whether a silver clutch purse or a floppy market bag with giant metal loops for handles.

One giant fuschia beret was perched above a bat-wing cape and slinky trousers - offered in green or mauve, while an elfin pointed hat grabbed the eye above a demure ribbed sweater and slinky trouser set.

The French designer rounded off with a line of conventional jacket-and-trouser combos, followed by cocktail dresses in a riot of shimmery pastels, sequined purples and greens, with translucent strips of fabric flowing from the or shoulders.

And for the finale, the evening wear lost its colours to reappear as a bridal collection, with the models reworked in richly-embroidered silk or in one case with a full bustle train.

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