PARIS -- For Junya Watanabe, a collection is never about a single reference point or theme. It's about the work--rigorous technique--which evolves before our very eyes on the runway.

The designer's powers were on full display Saturday morning at Paris Fashion Week when he presented an incredible lineup of what were essentially fabric assemblages-- careful constructions, collages and patchworks of lace, tulle, tweed, ribbon and fur, painstakingly put together and wholly elegant.

The collection was all black, which allowed the differences in texture and shine of the fabrics to really sing.

And the way the show was orchestrated (because it really did feel like a musical riff) revealed the evolution of the creative process from collection's beginning to end.

It started before we even arrived, with the invitation, a patchwork of glossy squares mounted on flexible paper.

On the runway, the show started similarly, with dresses and skirts made of overlapping fabric cutouts. The 3D sculptures in lace, leather, tweed, glittery boucle and sequins were worn over sparkly leggings and lace-up brogues.

The technique evolved into a patchwork effect on black pants, button-down shirts, sweater knits and an incredible toggle coat. And then the fabric pieces narrowed to vertical ribbons and strips on long skirts, tail coats and dresses, some of which had tiny ruffles, rows of crystals and fur.

It was something to watch. And the technique and artistry didn't overshadow the functionality of the clothes. There were cardigan sweaters, patchwork pants and parkas that will be fabulous to wear.

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booth.moore@latimes.com