There was change in the Parisian air during the recent Fall 2014 shows, as designers took off in a multitude of different directions, surprising and inspiring with their fresh perspectives. Our fashion director Alastair McKimm’s top ten collections cover the range of these new looks, as can be seen in the slideshow above.

Perhaps the most conspicuous change came from Givenchy’s Riccardo Tisci, who eschewed his usual hard-edged street wear for a classically feminine look of floaty dresses, soft coats, and bushy furs. Rick Owens also brought a revealing intimacy to his designs, which came in gentle shapes and soothing tones with a quietude that contrasted with his energetic shows from previous seasons. Rei Kawakubo continued her provocative and progressive streak over at Comme des Garçons, offering up, in essence, a new definition of what clothes can be, following on her authoritatively sculptural pieces for this Spring. Arch-modernist Phoebe Philo took a more historically-minded route for Céline, adding a touch of old-school avant garde to her refreshing pieces, which swept towards the floor in smooth, Thirties-inspired silhouettes. Haider Ackermann’s collection seemed to gain in power from his recent foray into menswear, with sharp shapes and clean lines that spoke of a rigorous simplicity. Junya Watanabe injected his all-black looks with a healthy fascination with the art of patchwork, constructing inventive pieces that overflowed with engaging details. Sarah Burton moved away from her sturdy, sculptural designs at Alexander McQueen for a loose, natural wildness in the swinging dresses and overwhelming furs the models wore as they stalked what looked like a romantic moonlit moor. Yohji Yamamoto went for full volume, with all-enveloping coats and vibrant anime- and graffiti-inspired prints. Anthony Vaccarello added an Eighties inspiration to his trademark sex appeal, with short skirts and revealing cutouts in sleek black with just the right touches of vibrant bedroom red. But the biggest news—and the newest—came from Nicolas Ghesquière, freshly appointed to Louis Vuitton, who brought a singular brightness and his characteristic eclectic take on modernism to a house that is centuries old, but didn’t look it one bit.

Yohji Yamamoto photography by Monica Feudi.

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Left: Alexander McQueen Right: Givenchy