THE demise of couture has been long foretold: It's too expensive, observers say, too fussy, too time-consuming, too incompatible with the way people live today. Couture is breathing its last, they gravely assert, season after season.
But one look at the audience at Dior's spring-summer 2011 haute couture show on Monday at Paris Fashion Week, which concluded yesterday, sufficed to suggest the contrary.
Nearly 1,000 guests braved a persistent drizzle and impossibly cramped seats to marvel at - and perhaps, later, invest in - the spectacular, outlandish, impractical and astronomically priced made-to-measure concoctions. That was about twice as many as attended last season's show.
Georgio Armani, a red carpet favorite, gave his celebrity fans lots to lust after with a high-sheen collection of futuristic column dresses.
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