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Rarely does the demure Paris Couture Week see a standing ovation. Even rarer is the whooping and screaming that echoed around the gilded salons of the Hotel Salomon de Rothschild as Pierpaolo Piccioli took his bow following Valentino's collection Wednesday evening.Mika, Valentino Garavani, Natalia Vodianova and Tracee Ellis Ross all got to their feet as the rousing operatic voice of Maria Callas played out the sumptuous creations from what was the week's strongest collection. It's been banned in public – but smoking, the theme of the fall-winter couture collection, has evidently not been outlawed as a source of fashion inspiration.The unusual homage by Gaultier to one of the world's dirtiest, and most glamorous, habits made for a typically tongue-in-cheek collection of 73 varied looks.Oversize rounded shoulders, which were sometimes dramatically raised from the body, were a new silhouette variation on the house's bread-and-butter cinched waist looks.The unusual move means that almost all images of the couture are now under the direct control of the Maison Margiela house.
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