A gorgeous array of butterflies have alighted collections all over Paris this week—fluttering onto the runways at Couture Fashion Week in many colors and sizes. Yiqing Yin took on the trend in the way of brow-conceiling accessories, covering several of her models’ faces with feathery faux butterflies to create romantic kaleidoscopic masks. Alexis Mabille accented his ethereal, goddess-like collection with 3D white paper butterflies placed in his models’ hair, that trailed down their faces and backs, giving them a lighter-than-air appearance. Jean Paul Gaultier‘s show took on the butterfly motif in full, and included multiple explicit references to the winged insects like pinched waists and winglike protrusions from shoulders. To mirror his butterfly-themed clothes and accessories, several of Gaultier’s models even sported hairdos shaped like actual butterflies (take that, Lady Gaga hair bow). Valentino‘s collection was inspired by the opera, but surprisingly featured a menagerie of animals—including a floor-length cape covered in a rainbow of realistically rendered papillons that was beautiful from the front, but stunning from the back.
All this butterfly talk has us thinking back to the days of plastic butterfly hair clips, but these statement-making, one-of-a-kind couture looks were utterly magical in comparison to the trends of years past. In the famous words of Mariah Carey, “spread your wings and fly, butterfly!” Scroll through our gallery to catch all the best moments from Couture Fashion Week.