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Thursday, October 7th 2010

Paris Fashion Week Diary: Fashion Director Kate Ciepluch

Paris Fashion Week is the highlight of my year. The city’s beauty takes your breath away, and it’s so quaint compared to the hustle and bustle of NYC. Going in October creates the ideal landscape (and weather) to start wearing fall’s best pieces.

Day 1
We stopped by the RMO showroom to view London-based Markus Lupfur’s adorable collection. Spring 2011’s range has a safari inspiration. We loved the giraffe and cheetah jumpers and his beaded chiffon cheetah dress. We also met Lily Allen and her sister, who have just opened a shop in London with vintage-inspired frocks.

After finishing up in market, we hit a few stores (Sandra, IRO, Maje) and then went to Au Petit Fer à Cheval in the Marais for a dinner of fromage, bread, and Côte du Rhone.

Kate with Shopbop buyer Jane on their way to dinner at Au Petit Fer à Cheval.

Day 2
Our second day, we headed to Espace Ephémère Tuileries, Jardin des Tuileries, for the Viktor & Rolf runway show. Walking in the Jardin des Tuileries is a surreal experience, with the manicured garden filled with statues and monuments.

Kate at the Viktor & Rolf show (left) and in the Jardin des Tuileries.

Next stop: Carrousel du Louvre for the Tranoï trade show, where we said hi to our friends at Majestic tees, Dannijo, Pencey, Sauce, and Winter Kate, and checked out some new brands. We then walked over to London Showrooms to see the Les Chiffoniers spring collection—some gorgeous, fluid rompers in kelly green and a deep pool blue.

Nighttime activities included a meeting at Hotel Costes and an amazing dinner at Derriere where we ran into our friends from Alexander Wang. The evening ended with a long walk home (even longer because my heel broke) during Nuit Blanche, an incredible night in Paris where museums stay open all night.

Day 3
Our third day in Paris was a packed day of market appointments, including Matthew Williamson (which will be launching on Shopbop in spring!!). Matthew Williamson imagines a spirited city dweller marooned on a desert island. She has her urban wardrobe staples: her khaki-colored silk jacquard utility pants, cropped tweedy jackets, and olive pleat-front blouses with epaulets. There is macramé, raffia tiered skirts, and exotic prints with flashes of acid, undersea motifs, and blooming orchids.

Next in our packed day: Preen. The label showed in an extraordinary apartment on the Left Bank overlooking the river. The collection had lovely ladylike dresses that hit below the knee, and we made our selections while eating peanut M&Ms and talking about London with the sweet girls from Preen.

Kate and Style Director Morgan outside Preen.

Next stops: cool British denim line Superfine, and Opening Ceremony where we wrote…RODARTE for Opening Ceremony!!! We also loved Pendleton for Opening Ceremony and SUNO.

Day 4
Another whirlwind day: the DSQUARED2 cute and preppy runway, Zac Posen with body-hugging frocks, and the Vanessa Bruno runway, which had the most striking view of the Eiffel Tower outside and Lou Doillon sitting front row inside.

At left, a look from the DSQUARED2 showroom. At right, the view from the Vanessa Bruno show.

Style Director Morgan and I had dinner with Rebecca Minkoff and her awesome friend Tali at Chez Omar, where we ran into the Tom Binns folks carrying one of their SICK studded bags for spring. And for the finale, the New York, New York party which was a night of champagne and dancing! What more can a girl ask for?

Day 5
Leaving Paris is awful! A few more meetings on our last day, and a run to Isabel Marant and Bon Marche, the most amazing department store, which reminds me… Check out these brands. They’re big in Paris, which means they’re big on style.

Antik Batik
Ash Shoes
Ashley Ashoff
Catherine Malandrino
Tila March
Vanessa Bruno

Shopbop Fashion Director

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