Paris Fashion Week Pt1 – Chloe, Rick Owens, Lanvin & Jacquemus
Next is Paris Fashion Week 2015! 29th-7th Oct.
CHLOE threw something of a curveball this morning. Instead of the wistful silhouettes that we were expecting to arrive on the catwalk at the Grand Palais, came tracksuits, sporting stripes and carnival colours referencing a different dimension of the Seventies, the decade the house continues to reinvent so well. It’s not what you would immediately associate with the romantic, care-free Chloé girl, but as Clare Waight Keller explained after the show, this was about finding a new optimism.
“It stems from youth but it brings something really sophisticated with it too and that comes through with the trackwear and mixing tangy and sweet colours,” she told us. “I think it’s really important right now because there is a sense that optimism needs to come through in fashion and I felt it was important to reflect that in a generous way. I wanted to bring that through the fabrics, through the colours, the silhouettes.”
That she did. The usual lace slips were grounded with jogging bottoms; the signature cheesecloth maxi-dresses came not in cornflower blue and toffee hues but in sherbet shades; and bootcuts were replaced by easy, low-slung harem pants. It was relaxed and easy, as though Chloé’s girl was a girl on her gap year – something we saw in the pre collection. “It’s a high-summer collection – Chloé is very much about that type of thing,” agreed Keller.
The one element that interrupted this seasons’s bright new perspective was the extremely thin models that Keller cast. The designer said backstage that “the casting was really critical, getting a sense of individuality, of the person,” yet they managed to cast a shadow over that very sentiment and the celebration of femininity that Chloé is famed for.
WHILE it was initially distracting to see models carrying their colleagues upside down in body harnesses at the Rick Owens show this afternoon, there was – as we all knew there would be – a symbolic reason for it. Ever the contemporary showman, Owens challenges convention with his shows to highlight the fundamental message that he wishes to convey, and today it was “nourishment, sisterhood and motherhood, and regeneration”.
Sartorially these idea of birth, of women being fertile givers of life, found its way past the cradling harnesses into rich silk gazars and organzas draped around the body into creations that were “as close to floral as I’ll probably ever get,” said Owens, as well as asymmetric and sculpted proportions that, like human nature, were imperfect and raw.
It was a departure for Owens, by his own admission, and one that proved to his critics that he is no one-trick pony. Calmly sat front row in a shadowed corner of the Palais de Tokyo show space watching his crowd file in, it appeared that Rick Owens was experiencing a regeneration of his own today.
WITH hot-pink, heart-shaped cookies and fizzing raspberry champagne enthusiastically and generously handed out to show-goers, tonight’s Lanvin show was a party-slash-love-in.
What started as a buttoned-up, pleated skirt uniform affair in a series of frayed tweeds (the staples that Alber Elbaz believes to be essential in a woman’s wardrobe), quickly morphed into dresses possessing some of the brightest sequins and full-on gem-stone shine that we have seen so far in the City of Light. It was unapologetic glamour and, as with all Alber’s creations, a celebration of womanhood.
“It’s a celebration of femininity, of colours of shine and volume, silhouettes, bows and crystals,” said Elbaz of the sequinned cardigans, flapper-style dresses, classic A-line party dresses and rich jewel hues. Decoration was big here too, with ensembles accessorised with chandelier earrings, bold layered necklaces and brooch-heavy lapels – this season’s requisite bling not new to Lanvin, but a factor that will mean this collection comes into its own next season when it sits beside its contemporaries on the shop floor. What it was not, he told us, was playing to any predictable trends.
“In terms of the androgyny that everyone else is talking about – where the man is the woman and the woman is the man – I think that women are women and men are men. Women need to be women and men need to be men. I didn’t look at any reference for this collection but I was asking myself what is it that I need to do as a designer? And this is it.”
While you won’t see Elbaz tapping into normcore anytime soon, the prints of Lanvin handbags, shoes, perfume bottles and the address of its Parisian flagship in the last third of the show, did in fact reference trends around him, albeit in more of an existential sense.
“It’s a different job now,” he reasoned, in his trademark soothing tones. “First, I started as a designer, then I was a creative director and now I have to work on the image – so we are image makers and we sell iconics, to sell shoes and bags and perfumes. I think that it is important to show both sides co-existing.” The upshot? Women will find plenty to fall in love with come spring.
KNOWING that you are about to be a part of something special is always a good way to start a fashion show. Bringing his attendees (which included members of the public) all the way out to a warehouse in the 16th arrondisement this evening, Simon Porte Jacquemus put on a spectacle that will come to be a landmark event in his no doubt long and successful fashion trajectory.
Beginning with a large red ball that was pushed with hardship across the vast stage by his eight-year-old cousin, Jean, and symbolised his a “red nose” – referring to recent turmoil in his personal life – the show played out with spontaneity, from the setting, to the models route across the circular catwalk, to the clothes themselves. Masterminded in a single afternoon in his studio, he told us, it showed not to haphazard effect but more like the result of one of those elusive spurts of creativity. The deconstructed, back-to-front shirting that was knotted, gathered and twisted in a manner of all ways possessed a raw honesty, reflective of the designer himself, who walked across the floor, barefoot, leading a white stead symbolising a new start.
And a new start it is. This is the first collection that Jacquemus has shown with LVMH support – he won a special runner-up sum, in addition to year-long mentorship, in the conglomerate’s annual prize – something which he is has not taken lightly.
“This season I felt free, like I had the luxury to start again,” he told us amidst emotional scenes backstage, reminding us that at the tender age of 25 he has only had a studio for a year. “I was really obsessed with the detail – and with €100,000 you have to show something.”
And that he did. Phoebe Philo, Nicholas Ghesquiere, Karl Lagerfeld and their judging colleagues on the LVMH jury have clearly backed the right horse.
I loved all of these collections!!! 😀 Rick Owens for weird reasons..
More to come..