Vivienne Westwood at Paris Fashion Week

Vivienne Westwood shows us all how to beat the credit crunch with her Paris Fashion Week show

Marie Claire Fashion News: Vivienne Westwood
Marie Claire Fashion News: Vivienne Westwood

Vivienne Westwood shows us all how to beat the credit crunch with her Paris Fashion Week show

Who knew it was possible to beat the credit crunch and be fashion-forward at the same time?

Well, Vivienne Westwood for one.

Her Gold Label show, which took place in Paris last night (fashion dunces keep up, she shows her Red Label in London, but Gold in France) not only deconstructed just about every trend we've seen on the runways so far this season, but even came with handy instructions about how to survive the coming season on a budget.

'Do it yourself,' the A4 sheets on our seats cried out. Make 'necklaces out of safety pints' and shawls from 'blankets, table cloths, curtains, towels, or a meter of fabric'. Better still, 'style together with beautiful pieces from your wardrobe or that of your mother or husband'.

Think she's joking? Not quite. While there was the odd piece we probably will have to drop into her Conduit Store to buy (a particularly beautiful red silk dress is top of the wish-list), the capes, nappy-style shorts and torn ballgowns on offer looked manageable for even those with the most rudimentary sewing skills.

If you do fancy splashing the cash, Vivienne suggests a pair of boxers, worn rapper-style over your usual waistband. 'We offer them in silk or in the same fabric as our jackets,' the notes pointed out.

While, if you are doing it yourself, leopard print is in, as are pyjama-style stripes; anything that looks like it's been thought about too much is most definitely out.

And after all that, the grande dame of British fashion reminded us: 'There is status in wearing your favourites over and over until they grow old or fall apart.'

Who said you had to spend money to be on trend?


Report from Carla Bevan in Paris

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