Muscles worn outside the body this season

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The Independent Online
IF IT'S hard-edged, avant-garde glamour you're after - think second- skin leather catsuits and neck braces made entirely out of Swarovski crystals - Tristan Webber is your man.

His spring/summer 2000 collection, Jeux Musculaire took ballet exercises and the effect dance has on the body as its inspiration. He translated the pressure and tension quite literally into his clothes, with muscle bulges and sinewy prints.

Webber, who must have had his head buried in an encyclopaedia of anatomy for months, even marked his white catwalk with inky black anatomical diagrams.

His prowess as a star cutter is undeniable. One powder blue leather jacket had its back sliced open and filled in with perforated fabric that resembled a pair of lungs.

Scalpel-sharp shell tops were cut with muscle structures in mind, while bioluminescent silks and chiffons, zigzagged with seams, were patterned with glittering rib cages.

These were clothes for brave urban warriors, the sort of body armour that Zena Warrior Princess would be proud to wear on the battlefield. But it was when Webber held back on the aggression and issued hi-tech sportswear fabrics in more simple vest and trousers (though still criss- crossed with complex stitches) that the designer appeared to be thinking of clothes to sell, not creations to marvel at.

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