Issey Miyake's Electro Highland Fling
Anyone who hadn't yet fully woken up was blasted to their senses by the blare of bagpipes that sounded through the Tuileries show space as the Issey Miyake show began. The source of the noise? Four groovy Japanese guys bopping away with antiquated manual sound mixers in a little chamber above the catwalk. Like a pseudo-Celtic Japanese Kraftwerk, they made the machines sing - a twisting, looping, abstracted highland fling that had everyone in the audience smiling and tapping their feet.We weren't the only ones - the models came down the runway smirking - how novel! And like a yawn effect it spread so that the whole show venue was grinning from ear to ear. But it wasn't just the music, the models, the bopping beat-creators that had us vibing - the clothes were enough to make anyone break into a smile. Just like the music, the collection was an abstracted version of a highland fling: plaids were pixelated and pleated, traditional colours were played with, tartans were given a new lease of life.A warm ochre suit had the collar popped to reveal a burst of technicolor tartan underneath; wide silk trousers split to the hip to show more billowing tartan; girls walked down two by two in neat little mannish shirt and trouser combos that were colour-blocked like blown up family plaids. The pleats made their appearance in light asymmetric shift dresses splashed with - you guessed it - electrified tartan.The fabrics were light and fluid, the little black and orange booties were flat and made for dancing. We were on the edge of our seats expecting the girls to break into dance at any point.They didn't quite, but at the finale, still smiling broadly, they performed a sort of cross-over routine that was right out of a set dance. We clapped loudly for them, we clapped loudly for the designer and we clapped loudly and riotously once again when the Open Reel Ensemble finished their riotous Scottish techno fling. We were still clapping as we walked out blinking into the grey Paris morning.