The highlight of couture week has been Balenciaga couture Fall 21. A tribute to the absolute essence of Balenciaga, it was both austere and grandiose, and I think it’s fair to say, surpassed everyone’s expectations.
Having kind of tuned out recent Balenciaga ready-to-wear collections (too hype-y, too meme-y!), I was enthralled by this first Balenciaga couture collection in 53 years. The minimalist silhouettes, (what a fab trench!), the space-age headgear, the jeans and tee treatment and the baublicious jewels. What looked like a crocodile skin skirt and trousers were in fact made from tiny pieced-together squares of leather. There were shades of Margiela (one of Demna Gvasalia’s most respected designers), McQueen and – to my eye – Raf’s Dior. (more…)
“He was taking his own time, but I also discovered that his clothes withstand time. They are eternal. While I was discussing with Richemont, I bought a lot of vintage pieces and each time I realized they were immune to aging. At Alaïa, creation has its own pace. Such a rare thing in the landscape of fashion. Time as luxury.”
A great reflection from Pieter Mulier on Azzedine Alaïa’s appreciation of time, Vogue. (more…)
The joy revolution that started to emerge during the SS21 collections last September is fully showing up for SS22. The most prominent menswear shows have been the ones with a message of optimistic hedonism expressed through colour, music and a throwback to rave culture.
For example I loved Dries van Noten’s Primal Scream soundtrack serenading us through the streets of Antwerp, with the lyrics of Loaded encouraging us to “be free to do what we wanna do!” Van Noten expressed the mood of his design team as “clothes to go and have fun in. Just enjoy things. Go to the night club with silk shirts on.” The shirts were the big highlight; big in every sense, printed with artwork by Rubens and Breughel, as well as photomontages depicting Antwerp city scenes, teamed with loud sunglasses and washed silk outerwear (more…)
One of the best shows I saw for SS21 was Felipe Oliveira Baptista’s Kenzo collection. Inspired by beekeepers and their utilitarian outfits, the show reflected the social distanced ‘Contagion’ times with incredible headgear and hazmat-style all-encasing outfits fashioned from classic Kenzo florals.
I have a bit of a thing for reveal-conceal headgear, so the hats in particular were my standouts. But the whole show video is gorgeous – do watch! Tragically, it’s just been announced that Kenzo is letting Oliveria Baptista go after only two years at the LVMH-owned brand. Hopefully he’ll get snapped up soon… (more…)