As the fashion circuit draws to a close after an Oriental cameo, with Kendall Jenner making waves in Shanghai, and the trend-setting Japanese hosting the Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week in Tokyo, let’s take a moment to look back at what went down in Paris. Here are our top five highlights:
1. Chanel Airlines
Of course, we have to start at the Grand Palais, which was transformed into the clean, white, expansive Departure Gate No.5, where the attention to details such as Chanel-scarved check-in attendants and a Departures board listing the brand’s most recent destinations promised a spectacular show. And, of course, Karl Lagerfeld delivered. The vast, stark contrast of the terminal juxtaposed with the vibrant display of colours and designs to draw your eyes to the fashion. Easy-fitting, chic silhouettes in pop colours and retro styles showed a range that paid homage to all kinds of jet-setters, simultaneously celebrating the past and looking to the future. 2. Rick Owens’ Human Backpacks
Thoughts? #humanbackpacks #rickowens #fashion #fashionista #runway #models #pfw #paris #parisfashionweek A photo posted by @shoessieq on
“Why?” is likely your first thought. An understandable stance, especially given his choice to position some of his “backpacks” more like “fanny-packs” on the models’ fronts, in what one journalist very accurately called the “paranoid tourist position“. The designer’s latest stunt seems to have completely removed attention from the garments – which themselves were by no means conventional – instead drawing both criticism and praise for his commentary on the bond between women and the strength they show in supporting each other as mothers, daughters and sisters. It’s clear that he doesn’t care if people agree with his methods, as long as the underlying message is received.
3. Louis Vuitton‘s Digital World
Nicolas Ghesquière, Creative Director of Louis Vuitton, and his vision of a “frontier of the digital world” drew wide praise for successfully combining an essence of digitalisation with realistic fashion, to create a new genre of high-end fashion. It’s amazing that Ghesquière, leading the biggest brand in the world, and more importantly in the luxury fashion space, was able to positively engage an audience to a line of clothing that resounded with echoes of punk and sci-fi, blended with classic silhouettes in long dresses and leather jackets. The collection has brought many comparisons with George Miller’s Mad Max universe, the Japanese manga Evangelion, and Wong Kar-Wai’s 2046, which gives you an idea of the influence of past, present and future. 4. #BALMAINARMY
#SashaLuss, #KendallJenner and #HeriethPaul backstage at #BALMAINSS16 #BALMAINARMY A photo posted by BALMAIN (@balmainparis) on
Balmain’s line-up of supermodels is hardly something to be scoffed at. The “Balmain Army” is true and real, as described by Gigi Hadid herself, with a catalogue of today’s A-list catwalkers both running the show on stage and ruling social media off it. And there’s a reason these famous faces are drawn to this particular label. Its dessert-toned uniformity of fashion brought together these women and all their fans in a fierce display of femininity, with models of all types flattered and celebrated with cut-outs, crochets and lattices mixed with solid panels, ruffled dresses and gold collars. Just one look at the Balmain Instagram page will show you the infectiously positive effect Olivier Rousteing’s designs have on its muses and critics.
5. Alexander Wang Bids Farewell To Balenciaga
Alexander Wang’s last show for Balenciaga rounds off our list, with the designer stepping down from his role as Creative Director to focus on his own brand. The bold, all-white, display in a beautifully rich, Mediterranean setting, drew up happy, summery vibes, which also brought with them a haunting finality. Wang describes the looks, ranging from sheer lace-patterned dresses to satin two-pieces, all complete with lace slippers more at home in a hotel bathroom, and accompanied by an East-West Hip-Hop soundtrack, as being inspired by Parisian artisans, and a search for purity. A finale brought to a head by a selfie-taking appearance by the man himself drew an all too short tenure to a wonderful close. With more time on his hands to work on his own brand, the prospects for both Alexander Wang the brand, and Balenciaga – under a new Creative Director – are no less than mouthwatering.