Welcome to Paris! The land where anything is possible in matters of la mode, including zapping the fashion-jaded out of their ho-hum doldrums. Paris — where creativity flourishes, where every girl can be her own fashion show, where the shirtdress and a black bustier frock are anything but basic, where robotic skirts pirouette around static bodies, where blatant pilfering results not in shameful knockoffs, but in artistic manifestos. Where all of that can percolate and bubble over in a mere two collections.
For fall, Viktor Horsting and Rolf Snoeren, the dynamic duo of high-concept shows, strove to flaunt the notion of distinction. “We wanted this to be about our essence, our individuality as designers," said Snoeren before their Viktor & Rolf show. And how better to telegraph that than in the way their work allows women to celebrate their own individuality? Thus, each girl was presented as her own mini, self-sufficient fashion show, complete with lighting rig (harnessed ingeniously without adding a tad of girth to the torso) and her very own music via mini speakers.
What did this wacky schtick have to do with the clothes? Showmen that they are, the designers used the aluminum tubing as display mechanisms for clothes of outsized proportions, from the languid train of a dress to an overextended collar on a camel coat. Then there was a big dirndl skirt decorated with stereo speakers. But the real fascination with these designers comes from their ability to show real, even low-key clothes within an outrageous context. And so they did: smart suits, cropped pants with little jackets or sweaters, lovely shirtdresses, including one embroidered in crewel-worked flowers, its voluminous skirt attached to the tubing like a giant fan.
Often folded details distinguished the clothes in shoulder work on dresses and sweaters, as well as in a skirt's box pattern, created by creases in the fabric. These were inspired by Dutch folkloric fare. "Traditionally, people didn't want to cut the fabric," Snoeren said. "They were too frugal — cheap, maybe." That's one trait from their heritage that the designers have not adopted, as is obvious in their tony designs and in the wealth of ideas with which they delight season after season.Speaking of runway delights, everybody knew that Yohji Yamamoto, who has so enchanted audiences at times in the past, was due for a dazzler. On Monday, that's just what he delivered in a gorgeous, deft infusion of lightness and subtle wit into his core sobriety.
Yamamoto opened with a chic sight gag of questionable origin: a girl in a long leather coat with a matching suitcase, both emblazoned with a riff on one of luxury's most famous logos. Was the intent mere spoof, or an expression of mild pique at how Vuitton's designer-in-residence makes no bones about his affinity for Japanese-inspired motifs?
Either way, the recurring logo captivated with charm and intrigue. Whether Yamamoto is bemused or merely irritated by the strength of Vuitton today, he certainly is not adverse to catching one's inspiration where one can; he's done it before with overt homage to Chanel and Dior. Here, he worked the YY-cum-Vuitton logo as well as a series of mechanical hoop skirts that rotated to the absolute delight of the crowd, an apparent nod to Hussein Chalayan. Yet here was Yamamoto at his best, offering lesser talents a primer on how a designer can properly manipulate whatever stimuli might strike him into his own material. His fixation with gender play showed up in tiered ruffles (in dresses and skirts) trapped between motorcycle jackets or tailcoats and trousers. There were girlish polkadots, boyish leathers and renderings of his new monogram that swung from romantic (bohemian headwraps) to tough (faux tattoos).
And though he delivered it all in his typically complicated cuts and compilations, he did so with a newfound buoyancy and grace. It offered a tingly reminder that, no matter how many fashion weeks sprout up around the world, there's nothing like show time in Paris.
@tradesy is turning the concept of a showroom upside down with its new space in Santa Monica. Here, the company plans to hold events, art exhibits and a showcase rare fashion pieces like this Louis Vuitton boxing set. Get all the details on Tradesy’s first showroom on WWD.com. #wwdnews
Spotted last night at the @erdem x @hm launch event: Kate Bosworth, Rashida Jones, Kirsten Dunst and Selma Blair. The party, which took place in LA, also marked the opening of their pop-up shop. “I was interested in creating a collection that wasn’t in any way disposable. It was about pieces you’d create and keep forever, things that have a permanence to it,” designer Erdem Moralioglu said. #wwdeye (📷: Katie Jones)
Renee Zellweger in yellow in 2001 and again in 2017. Chosen as one of the 12 @pantone Leading Spring Colors (and dubbed “Meadowlark”), it only makes sense that the bright hue stands the test of time and is making a resurgence this season, seen already on stars like @blakelively and @gigihadid. (📷: Donato Sardello & @rexfeatures) #wwdfashion #tbt
Dior’s 70th anniversary celebration continues with a new exhibition at the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto. “Christian Dior,” which is scheduled to run through March 18, takes a look at the founders tenure from 1947 to 1057 and feature 40 designs. Pictured here is an evening gown from the Ailée, fall 1948-49 haute couture collection. #wwdfashion (📷: Brian Boyle)
As one of the most recognizable models in the world, Christy Turlington Burns has an insider’s view of the fashion industry and the allegations of sexual harassment swirling around it. “I can say that harassment and mistreatment have always been widely known and tolerated in the industry. The industry is surrounded by predators who thrive on the constant rejection and loneliness so many of us have experiences at some point in our careers,” Turlington told WWD, along with her suggestions for how the modeling world should protect younger women and men. Read more on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: Tony Palmieri) #wwdnews
@asics America has tapped a new brand ambassador: famed DJ/record producer @steveaoki. This initiative is intended to set the tone for the new brand identity and philosophy and will include partnerships with influencers and in-store and off-line activations that will continue into next year. This is Asics’ most significant marketing effort in two decades, and is expected to attract younger consumers to the brand. #wwdfashion
24-year-old Jean Prounis is redefining the rules of jewelry. Formerly a studio assistant to Jemima Kirke and a design apprentice at Ghuran, she focuses on handcrafted subtleties and ancient goldsmithing techniques. “There was a really sterile feel in the environment and I wanted to have jewelry with character that shapes how you wear it everyday,” Prounis said. Each piece is hand made in New York, either by Prounis or three other jewelers in the district. #wwdfashion
“These collections continue to build on that vision, empowering differently abled adults to express themselves through fashion,” said @tommyhilfiger of his line of adaptive apparel, which launches today. The line consists of 37 men’s and 34 women’s styles based upon the pieces from the spring Tommy Hilfiger sportswear collection. #wwdnews