January marked the arrival of Spring/Summer 2021 haute couture collections in Paris. During these Covid times, these collections can provide some insight into how we’ll dress, how we’ll live our lives, and how we’ll embrace the future post-Covid. If these collections are anything to go by, we’ll reemerge from our cocoons to celebrate and party to our heart’s content, all whilst looking glamorous in our Gladrags.

These collections from the world’s most celebrated fashion designers burst with creativity at its core – not even a pandemic can prevent them from crafting these beautiful designs.

So here we go, here are the must-see looks from couture week.

Christian Dior

Presenting her regal and ethereal ensembles, Creative Director Maria Grazia Chiuri took inspiration from the magical world of tarot, reinterpreting the beauty and mysticism of tarot cards in her breathtaking collection.

1. Goddess in Gold

Christian Dior Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a gold dress with a fitted bodice and skirt that flairs from the waist.
[Image Description: Christian Dior Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a gold dress with a fitted bodice and skirt that flairs from the waist.] Via Vogue

The glowing gold hue, fringe hem, and fit and flare make this Dior gown the ultimate showstopper.

2. Classic Couture

Christian Dior Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a black and gold dress.
[Image Description: Christian Dior Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a black and gold dress.] Via Vogue

The color contrast with black and gold is a classic combination that never gets old in couture.

3. Dripping in Gold 

Christian Dior Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a sheer dress with gold work.
[Image Description: Christian Dior Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a sheer dress with gold work.] Via Vogue

The way the floral gold work cascades down the sheer fabric makes this a stunning piece.

4. Draped to Perfection

Christian Dior Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a brown metallic gown.
[Image Description: Christian Dior Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a brown metallic gown.] Via Vogue

I love the beautiful draping of this gown. Brown is not a shade I’m typically drawn to in couture, but Maria Grazia Chiuri has changed my mind with this look.

5. Woman in White

Christian Dior Spring 2021 Couture. A lady sitting on a horse wearing a sheer white gown.
[Image Description: Christian Dior Spring 2021 Couture. A lady sitting on a horse wearing a sheer white gown.] Via Vogue

I can visualize this gown worn by a bride at a beach wedding. The sheer, light-weight fabric and delicate bodice offer a beautiful silhouette.

 

 

Area

For their first-ever couture collection, Area designers Beckett Fogg and Piotrek Panszcyzk did not disappoint. Their vibrant collection consisted of Swarovski crystals (with over half a million crystals used across their 14-piece collection), bustiers, and headwear. A flamboyant collection, not for the faint-hearted.

6. Silver Chain Discs Galore

Area Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a black suit with a silver bow around the waist and large silver chain discs on the sleeves and trouser legs.
[Image Description: Area Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a black suit with a silver bow around the waist and large silver chain discs on the sleeves and trouser legs.] Via Vogue

An extravagant take on the black suit – no one will dare ignore you.

7. Tassels Abound

Area Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a white and silver tasseled dress comprised of a bustier.
[Image Description Area Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a white and silver tasseled dress comprised of a bustier.] Via Vogue

I can definitely see this white and silver tasseled dress as an evening wedding reception gown, perfect for partying and spinning around on the dancefloor.

8. Tiers upon Tiers

Area Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing an orange tiered dress.
[Image Description: Area Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing an orange tiered dress.] Via Vogue

I’d love to see this gown on the red carpet – seems very fitting for the Met Gala. I can vision Rihanna wearing this.

 

 

Armani Privé

A tender, romantic collection consisting of delicate floral embroidery, sheer fabric and pastel, midnight blue, and coral red hues. This couture collection exemplifies why Giorgio Armani is one of the masters of couture.

9. Magnificent in Midnight

Armani Privé Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a midnight blue velvet dress.
[Image Description: Armani Privé Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a midnight blue velvet dress.] Via Vogue

The bold, floor-length midnight blue gown is breathtaking. I’m also loving the pockets.

10. Flirty Florals 

Armani Privé Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a sheer midnight blue floral embroidered dress and bolero jacket.
[Image Description: Armani Privé Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a sheer midnight blue floral embroidered dress and bolero jacket.] Via Vogue

I adore the matching dress and bolero jacket and the intricate floral embroidery in this look.

11. Red Carpet Ready in Coral Red

Armani Privé Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a coral red gown and a black belt around the waist.
[Image Description: Armani Privé Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a coral red gown and a black belt around the waist.] Via Vogue

I’m certain we’ll see a celebrity wearing this gown – I can picture Zendaya and Sonam Kapoor turning heads in this beautiful frock.

12. Mesmerising in Soft Pastel Tones

Armani Privé Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a gown with a silver sheer bodice and sheer light blue skirt with floral embroidery.
[Image Description: Armani Privé Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a gown with a silver sheer bodice and sheer light blue skirt with floral embroidery.] Via Vogue

The translucent fabric and delicately embroidered floral work make this gown the epitome of glamor and sophistication.

13. Shimmering in Silver

Armani Privé Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a a gray gown with silver beading on the bodice and silver floral work on the skirt.
[Image Description: Armani Privé Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a gray gown with silver beading on the bodice and silver floral work on the skirt.] Via Vogue

The soft tones and delicate beading on this gown are breathtaking.

 

 

Giambattista Valli

Dramatic. Extravagant. Fabulous. When it comes to haute couture, Giambattista Valli doesn’t hesitate to make a statement. Valli’s voluminous gowns have been crafted skillfully with endless layers of taffeta. His Spring 2021 couture collection is the embodiment of high fashion.

14. Red Ruffles

Giambattista Valli Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a voluminous ruffled red gown and a sheer red veil over her head.
[Image Description: Giambattista Valli Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a voluminous ruffled red gown and a sheer red veil over her head.] Via Vogue

Red ruffles from top to bottom are sure to make heads turn. Is it just me or can you see Lady Gaga wearing this?

15. Trailing Train 

Giambattista Valli Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a voluminous gown with a red bodice and ruffled white skirt.
[Image Description: Giambattista Valli Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a voluminous gown with a red bodice and ruffled white skirt.] Via Vogue

The bold red and white color contrast, countless layers of fabric, voluminous silhouette and train can make anyone speechless when they lay their eyes upon this creation.

16. Bountiful Ball Gown

Giambattista Valli Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a voluminous white gown with a layered ruffled skirt.
[Image Description: Giambattista Valli Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a voluminous white gown with a layered ruffled skirt.] Via Vogue

This jaw-dropping gown can certainly make a one-of-a-kind wedding dress.

17. Pretty in Pink

Giambattista Valli Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a short baby pink dress with white floral work on the side and middle of the dress. A long baby pink train drapes from the shoulders.
[Image Description: Giambattista Valli Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a short baby pink dress with white floral work on the side and middle of the dress. A long baby pink train drapes from the shoulders.] Via Vogue

I love how the flowing train drapes from the shoulders and compliments the short dress beautifully in this design.

 

 

Iris Van Herpen

Iris Van Herpen’s fungi-inspired creations are an incredible feat as the designer worked closely with Parley for the Oceans to include upcycled fabrics in the collection. Her other-worldly gowns incorporate 3D printing, intensely rich tones, and striking silhouettes. You feel almost delirious with joy when you feast your eyes on these ensembles.

18. Light Up in Flames

Iris van Herpen Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a dark orange gown consisting of a train.
[Image Description: Iris van Herpen Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a dark orange gown consisting of a train.] Via Vogue

The gown gives the illusion of licks of flames engulfing the model’s frame – she looks powerful, formidable, and captivating. It’s safe to say I’m obsessed with this conception.

19. Magical in Mint

Iris van Herpen Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a mint colored gown with a train and pattern work on the bodice.
[Image Description: Iris van Herpen Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a mint-colored gown with a train and pattern work on the bodice.] Via Vogue

The mint hue, extraordinary bodice, and strips of fabric gliding behind make this gown a breathtaking piece.

20. Sea Blue Stunner

Iris van Herpen Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a two toned one-shoulder blue dress. Fabric drapes down from the shoulder and consists of a train.
[Image Description: Iris van Herpen Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a two-toned one-shoulder blue dress. Fabric drapes down from the shoulder and consists of a train.] Via Vogue

Love this gorgeous two-toned blue, one-shoulder attire. The draping is unbelievable.

21. Radiant in Red

Iris van Herpen Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a deep red gown with ruffles on the neck cascading down to the shoulders and arms.
[Image Description: Iris van Herpen Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a deep red gown with ruffles on the neck cascading down to the shoulders and arms.] Via Vogue

The revealing cuts, silhouette, and rich red hue are just dazzling.

22. Striking Structure 

Iris van Herpen Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a beige and yellow dress with a pattern at the center of the dress and ruffles.
[Image Description: Iris van Herpen Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a beige and yellow dress with a pattern at the center of the dress and ruffles.] Via Vogue

Would love to see Dua Lipa wearing this ensemble.



Schiaparelli

An eccentric collection deserving of high praise, Creative Director Daniel Roseberry pulled all the stops in his Spring 2021 Couture collection. From six-pack bustiers to voluminous sleeves, Roseberry offers his version of femininity that embraces loud and proud women into the fold.

23. The Six-pack Bustier

Schiaparelli Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a black six-pack bustier, black skirt and pink bow wrapped around the hips.
[Image Description: Schiaparelli Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a black six-pack bustier, black skirt, and pink bow wrapped around the hips.] Via Vogue

Can’t get over this six-pack bustier and pink bow – absolutely love this!

24. Black and Gold

Schiaparelli Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a black dress and jacket with gold embroidery on the jacket.
[Image Description: Schiaparelli Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a black dress and jacket with gold embroidery on the jacket.] Via Vogue

The heavy gold thread embroidery on this jacket is something else.

25. Glittering in Gold

Schiaparelli Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a long gold embellished dress.
[Image Description: Schiaparelli Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a long gold embellished dress.] Via Vogue

This is the kind of gown I’d like to wear post-Covid when I can finally go out to party!

26. The Draping Red Sleeves 

Schiaparelli Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a long black dress with red sleeves that drape down to create a train.
[Image Description: Schiaparelli Spring 2021 Couture. A lady wearing a long black dress with red sleeves draping down to create a train.] Via Vogue

I have never seen draped sleeves like these before. They compliment the black gown exquisitely.

There we have it – exceptional works of art from the Spring 2021 Couture collections from the biggest fashion houses in the world. For me, couture collections have offered a sense of escapism. Pre-pandemic, I took pleasure in eyeing the gorgeous silhouettes, colors, and embellishment. Now, I love taking inspiration from these designs and going through my wardrobe to see how I can reinterpret them. Couture will certainly influence how I dress when I enter the post-Covid world when all I’ll want to do is dress in my best finery.

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Rebecca Azad

By Rebecca Azad

Junior Lookbook + Weddings Editor