Giorgio Armani has decided to take us on a journey through the orient with pagoda-shouldered jackets; the lacquer reds; the tasseled fastenings; the Chinese-cabinet florals; and the tight, hobbling silhouettes of the decadents who populated the city then known as "the Paris of the East...... Armani has always loved Asian aesthetics and has frequented the East since he extended his empire there half a decade ago, so in many ways he's just traveling down an old familiar road. In any case, this collection really fell into two parts: the pagoda tailoring and the power play for the Hollywood red carpet. The latter was more effective, especially the shimmering paillette hourglass sheaths and the plethora of strapless gowns. As we all know, strapless shows no signs of dying out as the event uniform of choice. Which is why Armani doubtless spoke with full confidence in smartly rebutting the R-word question with, "I am sure this collection will be a success". I look forward to seeing at least one of these Oscar worthy frocks parading down the red carpet at the Oscars, perhaps Cate Blanchett, Nicole Kidman or maybe even Kate Winslett. Its a beautiful collection for those who can appreciate the artistry and craftsmanship of "Haute Couture".....either you get it or you don't.