Monique Lhuillier Spring 2012 Review

Monique Lhuillier Spring 2012 runway

Photos: Imaxtree

Looks from the Monique Lhuillier Spring 2012 runway

Show: Monique Lhuillier

Theme: Let's get physical!

Accessories: Shoes by Manolo Blahnik

Hair: Odile Gilbert for Keratase

Makeup: Val Garland for MAC

Overall Takeaway: Athletic looks can be sexy.

If you thought you had to choose between a sporty look and feminine one, think again. Monique Lhuillier's Spring 2012 collection was all about athletic edge, as the show notes put it. How does the woman known for red carpet gowns and dressing A-list stars do Sporty Spice? By showing racerback gowns (with sequins!) and color-blocked cocktail dresses that show off the body just so.

This was less about hitting the gym than a celebration of the figure, and the evening looks showcased silhouettes beautifully. Diagonal keyholes, one shoulder necklines, sexy cut-outs were all precisely arranged to flatter. Tulle dresses brought to mind bandage dresses, only these were softer. A white chiffon dress was given edge with a black leather harness. And panels of black lace popped up on jackets, dresses, tops, and more.

The prints veered into abstract graphics, skipping the usual florals we see with the season. But what Lhuillier does best—and what her celeb-studded front row (Mandy Moore, Leann Rimes, Rose McGowan) all came to see—are her gowns. So few do a floor-length evening look like she does. The bandaged tulle dresses now came with extra volume on the bottom. The prints were draped across the body in various formations. We'll no doubt be seeing these at an awards show soon.