There’s a neoclassic lightness to Thierry Colson’s Spring / Summer’ 16 collection with a spirit of endless summer afternoons in a meditation of blues, with the finest Indian chanderi delicacy and embroidery scattered like windswept flora across a Danish beach.

"I love the mentality of Jacques Henri Lartigue, and especially his color photography," says Colson. Lartigue’s ability to capture the moment, and the expression of joy in his pictures, led Colson to take this collection on vacation in Collioure for a series of photos steeped in Mediterranean insouciance.

Colson began with a game of block prints; juxtaposing their scale and working in combinations of closely related patterns for a subtle patchwork in variegated shades of blue---Greek, porcelain and sky---in billowy shapes with a sun-faded allure. Also in porcelain white-on-white crisp lawn, these romantic patterns make dresses and stand-away skirts look like lace lanterns as they reflect the light of sunny days. 

A certain idea of English 18th century romanticism and the luxuriant femininity in the paintings of portraitist Elisabeth Vigée Le Brun is echoed in shapes that allow sleeves to billow and skirts to tier baby doll style. This shows notably in Colson’s new dress with three-tiered skirt in organdy lawn. Yokes are sculpted while some sleeves are designed to roll like a modern shirt for a seamless mix of then and now.

Precious fabric is treated with a light hand. Chanderi silk/cotton, traditionally used for the finest sarees, is worked on the bias in a sheer porcelain tone with silver graph paper check flecked with individually-applied silver slub threads for dresses which wrap around loosely at the waist to close with a single button like a dressing gown. 

A fine, dusty pastel jacquard in a pattern reminiscent of little boats has an Edwardian feel, like a piece of fabric discovered in an old trunk, for crisp, oriental shapes.

And finally embroidery, in gradated blues for stalks of wheat and dandelions, is scattered over the hems of full skirts and appears in white-on-white in shorts; a luxurious touch treated in a light, offhand way.                                                                     Rebecca Voight