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Vanessa Bruno Ready To Wear Spring Summer 2014 Paris

A butterfly, flower, and zebra print meet in a bar. What do they talk about? Vanessa Bruno’s summer collection most likely, as all three featured – in one instance all together – on her runway where it was a little bit everything-and-the-kitchen-sink in terms of print, as the French designer showed her latest collection in front of a (French) star studded front row.

Bottom line: Better get those crunches in, as abs are in, or rather out on display nearly everywhere, save for a couple of dresses. This much skin seems like a new move from Bruno. Perhaps it was the only way to pace the prints? Whereas the flesh flashed by the low cut dungaree dress with matching cropped tank felt fresh, the sliver seen between a sleeveless blouse and (mis-)matched skirt felt sloppy. And woe betides anyone attempting the collection’s violent orange with too pale a skin: if your tan is any less than a toasted golden, wash out assured. That being said, it looked fantastic when not wholly dominant. To wit, a chevron playsuit achieved the right balance.

In the end, despite some definitely nice pieces – the white jacket with butterfly-printed lapels has definite “must have” potential – the overall effect was jarring; definitely plenty of work ahead of her merchandisers tasked with turning this into an attractive retail line-up.