"In general, the growing disjunction between the fashion show’s presentational effects and what is actually put up for sale would seem to fully warrant [Blass’s] cynicism. Another of Hochswender’s (1989c) Paris bulletins chronicles a somewhat bizarre instance:
'Paris, Oct. 23—-At one point during the Thierry Mugler show last week, the model Linda Evangelista cruised down the runway in a chrome and plastic bodice that resembled a speedboat dashboard. She pushed a button in her midriff, casually extracted an electric cigarette lighter, and had herself a smoke. Such fashion theatrics…are just that, theatrics.
Buyers who came to his Faubourg Saint-Honore show room today saw a somewhat different collection. At a working “mini-show”, held in the same blue rococo room as the runway presentation, about 50 merchants sat at tables with order forms in front of them. “Here they send out all the suits and salable dresses,” said Barbara Lemperly, the buyer for advanced designer clothing at Saks Fifth Avenue. “You can wear some of them to business meetings.”
…Jackets trimmed with chrome [in the runway show] could be bought without it. The models were smaller, less glamorous. “For a long time we didn’t invite clients to the runway shows,” said Didier Grumbach, the chairman of Thierry Mugler. “We were losing too many who didn’t understand. Thierry makes themes. The shows create a concept.”
A white leather diver’s jacket from the runway show, with port-holes, gauges and chrome tubes, had been stripped down and simplified (the original weighed more than 35 lbs)…The speedboat bodice with cigarette lighter? It wasn’t on the order form….’….”
(discussing the theatrics of semiannual haute couture fashion shows in Paris, New York, and elsewhere & how such shows “further falsify & make meretricious the relationship between what is displayed on the runway and what is sold in the marketplace”.)
"Fashion, Culture, and Identity", by Fred Davis c. 1992