Gilbert Chagoury, Designer of the Week, Fashion Week El Paseo, March 23, 2013

Photos By Gerry Maceda

The eighth year of Fashion Week El Paseo wrapped on a high note Saturday as designer of the week Gilbert Chagoury launched his “Shattered Innocence” collection to rousing cheers and standing ovations from the more than 1,000 people packing the Big White Tent.

The Dior-trained Beverly Hills couturier debuted the spectacular collection — created just for Fashion Week — to thumping music and rollicking applause. The energy buzzed at the pre-show cocktail party and never let up; eager fans were lined up outside the tent well before the show’s start.

“I feel amazing,” a jubilant Chagoury said after the show. “I feel so blessed and so honored and very happy.”

The packed room hummed with anticipation; it exploded with excitement when the lights dimmed to show video graphics of fire on a black background and the first piece, a fitted white skirt suit, hit the runway.

Chagoury’s use of white, red, champagne and black represented the “smashing” of a young woman’s innocence and this was apparent watching the collection evolve.

The first half of the show offered almost 40 new pieces, with suits, sheer tops, flowing and fitted pants, and abundant lace. Skirts featured lace detailing on the hips; others showed lace at the bottom, along with sheer, breezy blouses with fabulously feminine lace cuffs. A red fitted see-through lace top and skirt elicited big applause, as did a full skirt paired with a black and red coat.

The first half of the show drew cheers, but the second half — the evening gowns — ramped up the excitement even further.

Models strutted the runway in delectable creations to such tunes as “Feelin’ Good” and “Fever.” Some of the biggest applause came for a full-length cream and gold overcoat and gown, complete with train, and a black bodice and train over lace pants. A particular stunner was the nude sheer dress with hand-appliquéd lace located in the most demure places. His black lace gown with a detachable train offered options that ranged from red carpet to eveningwear.

“The inspiration of the show was the Victorian era,” Chagoury said. “I really wanted to put the hips and the feminine body out there. Everything you see right now is the skinny girls and I think that’s not interesting. That’s not the woman. The woman needs to have a shape. The woman is beautiful when she is a woman. So, that’s why in the collection I really exaggerated the hips.”

His use of 18th-century dress supports, such as the pannier, looked modern and gave the most elegant fashions an edgy look. Constructed from gold washed metal, these architectural devices were used to make a women’s waist look smaller, spread out the folds of the fabric, and show the entire front of the dress as the wearer swished across the room.

The culmination of the collection — the finale red bridal gown, shown to a “Ave Maria” — rendered the room silent. The stunning dress, featuring a full pannier, lace train, hat and veil, brought the crowd of 1,000 to its feet. A beaming Chagoury walked the runway at the conclusion, hoisting a bouquet aloft, to thunderous applause.

The guests chattered with excitement even as they filed out to attend the after-party; within minutes, the party was in full swing as attendees noshed on food catered by Jensen’s, surrounded by animal sculptures in the outdoor area, and hit the indoor dance floor.

Chagoury, who was born in Lebanon and raised in Paris, graduated from Parsons School of Design in both Paris and New York. He creations are found in Paris, the Middle East, New York, and Hollywood, and he counts such stars as Milla Jovovich, Katy Perry, Niki Taylor, Michelle Rodriguez, Paris Hilton, Shenae Grimes, Demi Lovato, Hayden Panettiere, Leven Rambin, Natasha Henstridge, and Edie Falco among his clientele. He also supports numerous charities, including the Carousel of Hope Ball in Beverly Hills, which benefits The Barbara Davis Center for Childhood Diabetes, iGoPink: The Breast Cancer Charities of America, and Go Red For Women.



Comments to this website are moderated by staff. While all comments are welcome, we encourage all to be polite and please do not use this system for advertising or business promotions. Any complaint towards a business or service should be directed directly to that business and not posted here. If anyone has a complaint that a comment is defamatory, please contact me at and I will take appropriate action promptly. Thank You

Add your comment:
Edit Module
Palm Springs Life
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Related Articles

Big Wheel Tours Brings Desert Wonders Closer

For Evan Trubee, a lifelong passion in cycling evolved into a 20 year business venture in outdoor-guided tours called Big Wheel Tours in Palm Desert.

Bright Lights Little City

The McCallum Theatre continues to showcase a diverse lineup of theater, jazz, comedy, music, and dance ensembles from all over the world.

Single Track Minds

Two local cycling experts share their takes on the best bike routes 
the Coachella Valley has to offer.

All That Glitters!

For decades, Michael Holmes has toured the globe as a cabaret singer and celebrity impersonator, sharing the stage with such stars as Sam Harris, Sting, and Elton John.

Brie Larson's Performance Catches Film Festival's Attention

For her performance in the movie, Room, Brie Larson will receive the Breakthrough Performance Award at the 27th annual Palm Springs International Film Festival Awards Gala on Jan. 2.
Edit ModuleShow Tags

Promotions + Contests

McCallum Theatre Broadway Blockbusters Experience!

McCallum Theatre Broadway Blockbusters Experience!

Enter just once for a chance to win tickets to one of the four 2015-2016 Broadway Blockbusters Series shows.
Romantic Palm Springs Getaway

Romantic Palm Springs Getaway

Experience the beauty, romance and excitement of the Palm Springs area when you enter to be the lucky winner of this romantic couples getaway
GuestLife Magical Monterey Bay Experience

GuestLife Magical Monterey Bay Experience

Cartoon Caption Contest

Cartoon Caption Contest

Each month, we provide a vintage 1950’s cartoon illustrated by Alice Rovinsky. You are invited to submit a caption or vote for your favorite caption.