Paris—the city of romance, dreams, beauty and fashion is always ahead of its time and trends. The fall collection showcased at the Paris Fashion Week 2018 was no less. From sharply-tailored women’s suits to oversized body-obscure dresses, plenty of designs managed to amaze us. Here’s a line-up:
Valentino’s Pierpaolo Piccioli took inspiration from flowers rather seriously. There was a huge water lily blooming on one gown; exquisite peonies splashed on another and dahlias and roses bursting with romanticism. Even though the flower-power was quite evident, it was in no way overpowering. Valentino gowns displayed a whimsical charm without appearing frivolous. All in all, the Piccioli collection was simple with a distinct, universal appeal.
Sarah Burton translated her love for nature in her collection for Alexander McQueen with leather bodices and tailcoats peeling away like cocoons; shoulder sleeves shaped like butterflies, and exotic insects embroidered on dresses. The colours too were inspired by nature—moss green, ladybug red and black and earthy browns. Burton described her collection as a ‘metamorphosis’ that created a ‘soft armour for women’. Her silhouettes with silk fringes were high on the wearability factor.
Christian Dior’s Maria Grazia Chiuri joined the #MeToo movement with her collection focusing on female empowerment albeit with a tomboyish edge. Protest slogans and a huge banner stating ‘I AM A WOMAN’ plastered on stage set the tone for the show. Inspired by the 60s feminist movement, there were a lot of fluid skirts, unisex blazers with a relaxed cut and pleated kilts with Dior-stamped waistbands. Also making a comeback were oversized coloured sunglasses and the saddle bag.
This time, Stella McCartney kept to her commitment of promoting ethical fashion through her designs. On the catwalk, there were faux leather skirts, fur-free fur coats, and faux skin jackets. She also gave up glue in favour of special stitching techniques. Keeping true to her kitsch touch, McCartney featured lots of blown-up blanket like skirts, hand-knit ponchos and oversized coats.
American designer Thom Browne’s latest collection is not exactly ready-to-wear. His couture style is tailored to the female version of Edward Scissorhands as there were tongue-in-cheek cut-outs of breasts and nipples, sculptured silhouettes in grey flannel and marble layering, and models walking on the runway in sharp, pointy hairstyles. The collection — exaggerated and edgy — seemed to put the female form on a pedestal.
Comme des Garçons
Rei Kawakubo created a world of pure fantasy. Different coloured fabrics were layered on top of each other in an ebullient heap like a puff pastry. The oversized body-obscuring garments looked futuristic as if they were from Alice in Wonderland. She took couture styling to the extreme by pairing dresses and lingerie on top of ball gowns.
The idea behind the collection was to dress for the cold weather, with clever layering and volume to create a fashionable look that’s good enough for a snowboarding experience.
Givenchy’s newest designer, Clare Waight Keller chose the gritty streets of 80s Berlin as her inspiration, fusing elements of east and west fashion in a film noir style. The idea of a femme fatale was quite apparent on the catwalk. There were sequined gowns with high slits, razor sharp suits, belted shirt dresses, and loose-fitting trousers paired with menswear-style overcoat that mixed femininity with masculine toughness.
Ackermann juggles his time efficiently between Berluti and his own label. His fall collection was a play on sleek yet dramatic styling. He contrasted matte and shiny fabrics, paired frills with vinyl pants, and poufy jackets with belted shorts. His idea was to blend masculinity with femininity. His was arguably the best show at the Paris Fashion Week 2018. Models emerged from a mist, coiffed as Armageddon and walked to trance music wearing gender-fluid clothing!
Known for his sharp tailoring, Joseph Altuzarra stuck to what he does best—work wear in pinstripes made for the power woman. His collection, inspired by real women, is quite wearable and trendy. Jackets had strong shoulders yet trimmed hourglass waists to accentuate their femininity. They were paired with pencil skirts and cropped trousers, the kind you would see women wearing to work every day. He rounded off his collection with gypsy frocks and chunky knit sweaters.
Bill Gaytten spun the Depression-era glamour and wanderlust on stage for John Galliano. There was fake news splashed on dresses and lingerie, and denim work wear paired with tweed jackets. He also drew inspiration from the travelling circus with tulle dresses embroidered with silver thread and fringes.