While its exact symbolism is up for debate, one thing is certain at Paris Fashion Week: blue is the colour of the season.

Designers have used the hue in their fall-winter collections, including Britain’s Phoebe Philo at Celine, Italy’s Maria Grazia Chi­uri at Dior, Japan’s Yoshiyuki ­Miyamae at Issey Miyake, Georgia’s David Koma at Mugler and Lebanon’s Elie Saab.

Designer Pierpaolo Piccioli’s gentle and thoughtful Valentino collection yesterday combined Victorian-era styles with Italian postmodern design.

Colours were also gentle — raspberry, sage green, turquoise, sheeny black with white. A stylish flash of cadmium yellow blossomed on a standout silken dress. An ethnic, multi-coloured patchwork coat was handled with subtlety — while long, soft pleats gently lined some of the most beautiful gowns seen this season.

Designer Phoebe Philo seemed to shrink the models in her inventive, proportion-play of a Celine show.

The lauded designer tamed the styles of the American cowgirl for the Parisian audience with a beautifully soft colour palette, with lashings of pink and peach. Skirts and coats with hip cutouts evoked cowboy chaps.

Prints with cowboy and rodeo motifs speckled with stars followed buttoned-up shirts, belts with exaggerated silver buckles, checks and hanging pendants with cowboy- style silver clasps.

A standout long coat-pant look toyed cleverly with the rodeo style. Feminine soft turquoise replaced blue denim, and the big Western leather collar was given a feminine twist, flopping softly and delicately.

Bill Gaytten, who designs for the house of John Galliano, took guests down the annals of fashion history.

It made for a richly reverential show that celebrated post-war styles and played with off-kilter proportion. Black ostrich feather hats were re-imagined in exaggerated width.

Coats that resembled the influential 1947 Bar Jacket, invented by Christian Dior where John Galliano worked for 15 years, were given a tweak with bulbous lower part and military buttons.