Paris is always a good idea, but when it comes to fashion it is the ultimate destination and this season was no exception. Of course, the fact that titans such as Céline, Louis Vuitton, Balenciaga, amongst other of the most influential fashion powerhouses in the world have Paris as headquarters has a lot to do with it, but still, there are many other smaller labels that also deserve our full attention.
If you were too lazy to check out all collections or simply missed them, I am posting them a bit too late, but here goes a list with a summary of my favorites from Paris Fashion Week. Scroll down to see which made it to the very top:
With black and white as the favoured (non) color palette, their signature skinny jeans were replaced by high waisted, boyfriend, and flared styles, also with frayed hems. Thick obi-styled waist belts that create fitted waists, kimonos, highly covetable knitwear, shearling jackets and gilettes, and a very versatile mix of different textures reigned the world of the Iro girl.
14. Akris. Luxurious minimalism in the form of clean, monochrome garments can be used to describe a collection executed in the finest of materials which were thoughtfully embellished. There was a reinterpretation of athleisurewear: down jackets, hoodies, fleece blazers, and pantsuits were layered, embroidered and detailed to achieve contrasting flowy, femenine, sublime, and at the same time edgy looks which were cohesive and beautifully put together.
13. Aganovich. If layering could be conceived as an artform, then Agnanovich has pretty much achieved the concept this time around. Complex and multi-layered garments were often draped and like magicians, they made cuffs and collars peak out of the tops . An otherwise neutral-hued palette was defied by pops of colorful floral brocades in inner structured layers.
12. Leonard. Even if you are not a fan of prints, Leonard’s craftsmanship at making them can make you and even the most reluctant print wearers change your mind. But the most impressive part about the show were the beautifully executed and refined shapes that hugged and elegantly adorned the models’ bodies.
11. Ellery. The most architectural silhouettes were conceived by Ellery for its fall collection this season as the clothes that would be worn by expressionist painter Egon Schiele’s models in his famous nude drawings. Even though the garments and looks arouse some sort of nostalgia, they still offer a contemporary twist, a futuristic vintage timelessness.
10. Louis Vuitton. Being a huge fan of Ghesquière’s work at Balenciaga and hoping that he would launch his own label after working there for over decade and a half, I must confess I was at the start disappointed to see him at a brand which epitomizes the most luxurious and alas, conservative and straightforward fashion in the world. The latter meant that he would have even less creative freedom than before and therefore leave behind the fashion forward and groundbreaking designs he was mostly known for and give way to more classic silhouettes. That is sad, because he is a visionary.
However, to my surprise, his latest work at Louis Vuitton after a year of his debut there was a hint of his former signature work. Perhaps it’s not fully detectable, but it is definitely there, as there is a general departure from the retro, 70’s era style which has prevailed in his work at the fashion powerhouse and it has been replaced for something different, something that embraces the future. There was a great use of technology always respecting the aesthetics of the label and without sacrificing craft, and hopefully, this is a sign that he will be more confident from now to bring more of his own vision into the table.
9. Theory. Clothes for the modern girl that are timeless yet somehow manage to look up to date? Yes, that’s Theory’s newest collection, which you could well say is very much influenced by Céline and The Row. This season Theory focuses on the girls who are into fashion and wear immaculately tailored clothes that are not necessarily trendy, yet there is innovation in the usage of materials for instance in knitwear. These are all clothes that people who love good proportions and great cuts would wear in a heartbeat on a daily basis, or at least I totally would.
8. Beaufille. This is definitely a line where opposites meet: Soft and tough, masculine and femenine, sexy yet understated, light yet heavy. The femenine, soft, and sexy side takes place in the form of cashmere loose knits in deep V-necks, flouncy skirts, and sheer shirts, whereas the masculine, heavy, and understated side reveals itself and counters the former in leather outerwear, long wrap skirts, garments with military references, and last, but not least, the tomboyish footwear. Everything is so effortlessly put together and balanced that I already consider myself a huge fan of the label.
7. Céline. Some might say that Phoebe Philo can do no wrong and it might be true, but I must confess that, while her latest collection is good, it not nearly one of her best. However, I did include it, because the looks and clothes that were good, were really good.
One thing is for sure: It’s different to what we are used to seeing at Céline. It was a more playful Céline, since Philo herself has admitted she was inspired by Latin America’s ‘hot blood’ this time around. She’s also stated that ‘dressed-up-ness’ has never been her cup of tea, but she wanted to give it a try. There was two sides to it: glamour, passion, and sex appeal taking place in fox trimmed and silhouette hugging coats, bejeweled shoes, and bustiers, and then there was the opposite: minimalistic and laid-back looks, which represent more the nordic aesthetics, paired with flatform white sneakers. That’s quite a lot of variety in one single collection and variety is good.
6. Acne Studios. This season’s outerwear at Acne Studios comes in XXL volumes, cocoon shapes with rounded shoulders and in materials such as tweed. However, often these supersized garments came cinched with belts, so the feminine silhouette was more dominant.
You could say there was some sort of 1940’s mob style thing going on, which is what added edge to all the tartaned looks, besides the label’s usual rock n’ roll inspired leather outerwear. Overall, a more straightforward collection than usual, still a very solid set.
5. Christophe Lemaire. Sublime femeninity and erotic fever are Lemaire’s prime concepts for their designs this season. Bare shoulders, deep v-necks, daring decolletés are elements of sensuality in conjunction with contrasting supersized coats and capes, which is a more understated form of eroticism, more like a suggestion of it. However, there was that melancholy that usually tends to be present in their collections in the form of rain coats, duffle coats, peacoats in conservative fabrics such as tweed, melton, and oilcloth.
4. Rick Owens. An architectural collection that is actually inspired by architecture itself, namely Frank Lloyd Wright’s formalist and Mayan inspired masterpieces, is bound to be monumental. Clear geometry and clean lines were embellished with frills, fringe, and sequins in a subtly glamourous manner.
3. Balenciaga. Wang’s work at Balenciaga came this season straight out of the archives, yet there were futuristic undertones to it. The aim of this collection was thinking about the fashion house’s orginal clientele: the aristocrats. And even though there was opulence, it was all executed in a tasteful manner and there was much more edge to the overall looks in technology and unexpected detailing, that you can’t say that it was how upper class ladies wore it all back in the heyday. The cocoon coats, rounded jackets, and bubble skirts were pretty much the brand’s dna, but at the same time, very contemporary or even ahead of its time.
2. Jacquemus. There are without a doubt so many Joan Miró and Picasso references that Simón Ponte Jacquemus used as concept in this collection, that you might as well call it a surrealistic/cubistic masterpiece in its own right. Double faces, faceless faces, peek-a-boo cut outs would all arouse the senses, Cubistic and puristic allusions were also present, such as geometrically cut garments and usage of primary colors. Jacquemus admits that the secret to his avant-garde designs is that he “cut(s) jackets as a kid will do”.
1. Stella McCartney. Dynamic structured silhouettes with a touch of playfulness are characteristic of Stella McCartney’s collections and this one is one of her best yet. Figure hugging one sleeved and off-the-shoulder knitted dresses, knee length wrap coats, ruffled fabrics, and even peplums were attributes that added femeninity and sex appeal to functional clothes and ensembles. Overall an exquisite, beautiful, and brilliantly executed and crafted collection which is, in my honest opinion, the best one coming out of Paris this season.