From the moment we first gawked at the stunning creations on Lanvin's S/S 09 runway, we knew it was only a matter of time until we turned it into an Inspired By story. As designed by the incomparable Alber Elbaz, the collection offers an awe-inspiring blend of fantasy and function through eye-popping baubles, bright animal patterns (hot pink or turquoise), and beautifully ruched pieces. How could you be anything but besotted with the elegant, electrifying results?
Determined to find accessible versions of Elbaz's stunning vision, we sought out items that shared this compelling balance of romance and reality. While the runway offered a significant selection of basic black, the look at Lanvin also involved a few pops of rich color, including golden chartreuse, emerald, and champagne. Construction details were key, as Elbaz showed off drapery, pleating, and bountiful bows or puffs. While the many monochromatic ensembles and refined color palette showed restraint, the collection also included some outrageous touches. Topping that list: wildly embellished jewelry, like the Enameled Drop Earrings ($744) and Pearls and Sequin Flower Bracelet ($665), and a few electric-hued leopard pieces, as seen on the Amalia Shoulder Bag($1179) and Floor Length Dress ($3043). Of course we kept all of this in mind while searching for our Inspired By: Lanvin items. Not to brag, but we think we achieved a similar vibe at a much more affordable price point. Just check out today's roundup for proof!
1. Rika Lou Blouse ($266)
Apparently Elbaz and Ulrika Lundgren, the Swedish-born designer of Rika, were on the same page for spring, as both parties included a bright-pink leopard print in their respective collections. Lundgren's short-sleeve blouse is perfectly in keeping with Lanvin's spring style and offers a fun way to achieve this high-fashion look.
2. Nine West <ahref="http://click.linksynergy.com/fs-bin/click?id=SA93MFJ5EcI&offerid=176538.10004966&type=3&subid=0" target="new">Jon Pump ($79)
This season, rhinestone-encrusted accessories ruled supreme at Lanvin, so why not try the trend with this extremely budget-friendly pair of d'orsay heels? The dark silver satin is a surprisingly versatile shade and the jewel-detailed toes add a bit of luxury to even the most basic outfits.
3. Forever 21 Beaded Loop Necklace ($11)
Elbaz unleashed his sense of whimsy on wonderfully ornate jewelry and sent out quite the assortment! Of all the intricate options, there's something truly special about the Enamel Necklace ($1300) and Enamel Strand Necklace ($1439), but neither piece is exactly in our budget-range. Happily, Forever 21's created a piece that packs a similar punch but won't blow our credit! The fuchsia bead-and-rhinestone necklace brings the gaudy-in a good way, of course.
4. Zara The Green Python Chain Strap Mini Shoulder Bag ($99)
The chain-strap bag has long been a Lanvin favorite, but we particularly liked the versions presented this spring. There was one emerald-green boxy number that really called out to us, so naturally we appreciate that one of our favorite high-street shops, Zara, created a strikingly similar style. Their petite, faux snake interpretation is just the sort of solid piece you'll reach for all summer long.
5. Ben Amun Emerald City Earring ($298)
Perhaps the easiest way to create a Lanvin-like look is to pick up a few pieces of exaggerated costume jewelry, like these megawatt earrings from Ben Amun. The glass stones and faceted beads are in keeping with the color palette spotted at our Inspired By show, while the bold size makes a splashy statement. Wear them with your hair scraped back in a bun, throw on some liquid eyeliner, and you'll be set!
6. Foley + Corinna Bow Dress ($297)
Surely you've got loads of weddings or cocktail parties to attend this summer, so why not show up in a stunner of a frock? The strapless sateen Bow Dress from Foley + Corinna is the perfect option, as its chic enough to be a prêt-a-porter piece, but is available at an attainable price. Plus it has that Elbaz elegance-always a desirable thing.
7. Worthington Sleeveless Blouse ($18)
The first look from the S/S 09 show was a knockout: a yellow, single-shoulder blouse paired with a voluminous black skirt and nude silk heels, as modeled by Lily Donaldson, above. While the actual Silk Gazar Top ($1545) is an investment item, Worthington's version is a great impulse buy. Just style this simple sleeveless blouse with your favorite structured black skirt for an easy ode to Lanvin.
8. Oasis Shantung Tulip Skirt ($81)
In addition to the way the hue of this turquoise silk-shantung skirt perfectly mimics the blue in Lanvin's leopard print, we were struck by its cut. The slightly exaggerated tulip shape echoes several of the runway show's silhouettes, while the bow-detail at the waist makes it a perfectly Inspired By piece.
Runway images, from firstVIEW.