Fatima Lopes kicked off Paris 2012 fall-winter ready-to-wear season Tuesday with blood reds, provocative leathers and fox fur at the Hotel des Invalides war museum.
The Portuguese designer channeled human morphology with blood-red dress inserts, shredded leather sleeves and prints of the venous system in the iconic monument that was built for generals wounded in French imperial wars.
Bucking the current trend for padding, the Lopes woman in geometric sheaths had narrow shoulders _ a look that would have accentuated the frailty of the tiny-boned models had it not been for the provocative leathers in patent black and nude.
"Yes, I make tiny shoulders and waists. But this is not weak. It's feminine and sexy, therefore strong," said the designer backstage, wearing one of her figure-hugging creations.
And sexy was the overriding mood, with bias-cut sheaths split revealingly up the leg and exposing the shoulders. In another sensual look with a plunging decollete, voluminous brown fox fur sleeves contrasted with tight patent leather lapels and a second-skin micro skirt.
When the show ended, the crowd departed sheepishly through the courtyard, with 40 huge canons pointing straight at them.