Bouchra Jarrar

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Review

  • Nicole Phelps

“Couture du jour.” Bouchra Jarrar’s PR man coined a catchphrase backstage before her show today, and there’s a good chance it’ll stick. No other designer working in couture approaches daywear with the same conviction. “It’s my signature,” Jarrar said. “I just think a woman looks most elegant in trousers.”

It was hard to find fault with Jarrar’s stitched-crease pants, cropped a couple of inches above the ankle. But she’s always been obsessed with fit. This season she gave her perfect trousers an extra helping of attitude, slinging multiple belts from the waist, some with heavy-duty silver chains attached. Sculpted metal necklaces and cuffs added more edge. On top, she proposed gilets in handwoven geometric patterns, an epaulette-shoulder vest in menswear wool, or a tweed Perfecto. All unzipped and sans shirts underneath them, or with midriff-revealing draped jersey wraps. “I wanted to see skin,” she said. As another option, Jarrar had fluid, silk satin pants. Their high waistline was fairly leg-elongating, but they didn’t have the same kind of gravitational pull as the cropped ones. A black leather style was especially lust-inducing.

For evening—Jarrar didn’t ignore the category completely—there was a pair of bias-cut trapeze gowns vaguely 1960s-ish in feeling with plunge-front V-necks and high slits, the more compelling of the two in a color-blocked combination of blush-pink crepe, black georgette, and ivory charmeuse. But like the woman said, she loves her pants; the two best outfits here made a showcase of them. The first came with a harness embroidered in ivory feathers and amber and mirrored crystals; the second with a tailored vest studded allover with iridescent beads.