As much as his style is about purity of lines, ingenious cut and volumes as airy as they’re exact, there’s always an element of sensuous fluidity to Rabih Kayrouz’s design. The garments are built with a feel for movement that doesn’t leave space for any stiffness, no matter how rigorous their construction may be.

“I think about the woman, I like to dress her for her real life,” Kayrouz explained at a showroom appointment where he presented both his ready-to-wear and couture collections. He doesn’t work based on specific inspirations (“everything inspires me,” he said), he doesn’t have themes, and moodboards are absent from the equation. “For me design isn’t a mood, but a thought, a consideration,” he said. Kayrouz also has a strong aversion to everything ornamental and decorative. “I don’t like the grand turn of phrase, I don’t like artifice, I like things very essential in everything I do,” he added. “And I don’t want to imagine a woman different from what she is; I don’t want to déguise her, or constrain her. I don’t live dans un fantasme, running after an abstract idea of what a woman should be.”

The two collections Kayrouz presented spoke a shared language, and it was interesting to see how he worked on the same shapes and volumes, giving ready-to-wear pieces an inventive haute couture twist, while keeping couture anchored to a more IRL vision. Everyday pieces looked elevated, while couture gestures didn’t feel grand, but rather polished yet cool. One of the best examples was a voluminous trapeze-shaped sweeping evening gown proposed in dramatic black taffeta for the couture line, while its ready-to-wear version was made in breezy recycled polyester in a delicate shade of duck egg.

Sculptural shapes alternated with more fluid ones in both lines. A couture black jacket/cape had an egg-shaped back and straight-slit sleeves, and was paired with slightly flared trousers for a chic suiting proposition. In the ready-to-wear line, a standout was a sinuous draped number in emerald jersey, with a plunging neckline and ballooning sleeves in crispy, papery recycled polyester.

For both propositions, a slightly sporty feel was reworked through Kayrouz’s elegant restraint, adding dynamism. But do not expect radical introductions of trends into Kayrouz’s lexicon: “I’ve always been faithful to my style,” he mused. “For me, style is evolution, not disruption.”