Lacroix still a master of the mix

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The Independent Online
It was African, 18th-century with a little bit of Mozart madness thrown in for good measure. Christian Lacroix, the master of eccentric French dressing, showed an upbeat but disciplined collection yesterday. There were bright mixes of colour, fine woven fabrics, and bright abstract patterns.

Sitting on the front row was Alexander McQueen, the British designer tipped for the job at Givenchy when John Galliano moved to Dior in time for the couture house's 50 year anniversary in January. He has been attending shows this week, including Rifat Ozbek and Ann Demeulemeester on Wednesday night. He is not commenting on whether or not he's been offered, or indeed is taking the Givenchy job. Lacroix is thought to have turned down the job at Givenchy in the summer: his label is owned by the all-powerful LVMH conglomerate which also owns Givenchy and Dior.

The Turkish-born British-based designer Rifat Ozbek showed his collection in the Moulin Rouge. The collection was almost entirely in black, dedicated to "Decadent Debutantes, Trustafarians and Aristocracks in Africa". The designer used the season's transparent fabrics to make fencing tunics, stretched tube dresses with ruffles tiers and decorated others with jet beading and feathers.

The Belgian designer Ann Demeulemeester showed a collection of classic tailoring and simple jersey dresses worn by androgynous male and female models which, at times, were difficult to tell apart.

The collections continue today with Vivienne Westwood, who shows this afternoon.