Older, younger, veteran, newbie, supe or supersized—spring runways provided a diverse departure from most typical catwalk mannequins.
For instance, just when it seemed models couldn’t get much younger, Karl Lagerfeld cast young Hudson, the two-year-old son of model Brad Kroenig, to strike a pose at Chanel. Dad proudly escorted his boy down the runway, in matching attire. Lagerfeld hit the other end of the spectrum too, casting his early Eighties muse, 53-year-old Ines de la Fressange, who last year was voted the “most chic woman in Paris” by readers of Le Figaro. (She beat out French ﬁrst lady and former model Carla Bruni.)
From the strength-in-numbers department, models walked in “power packs” at Louis Vuitton and Lanvin, while at John Galliano, they appeared in character as Twenties seductresses, casually stopping midstroll to ﬂirt with the audience.
“It’s great because everyone’s inspired to look beyond the show package,” said casting director Ashley Brokaw, whose shows included Proenza Schouler and Balenciaga.
At Jean Paul Gaultier, larger-than-life performer Beth Ditto opened and closed the show, and plus-size models Crystal Renn and Marquita Pring also took a turn on his runway. At Giles in London, 71-year-old supermodel Veruschka closed the show. Japanese Vogue fashion director Anna Dello Russo appeared in Emanuel Ungaro carrying an accessorized stuffed lamb. At Balenciaga, Nicolas Ghesquière cast Miranda Kerr (who was ﬁve months pregnant at the time), seven nonmodels (plucked from the streets by the Balenciaga team), and mixed in veterans like Stella Tennant, Amber Valletta, Carolyn Murphy, and Gisele Bündchen.
Brokaw says it’s important to maintain a point of view with unconventional casting. “Prada always does a really good job,” she explained. “It’s very clear what the perspective is, but it is maybe different ages, different shapes and sizes. Girls you don’t normally see on the runway or you haven’t seen in a while.”
Arizona Muse, considered by many to be spring’s breakout girl, was a Prada exclusive in Milan. “I feel supported by them, both as a model and as a mother,” said Muse, who recently resumed her career after having a son. Modeling and motherhood haven’t always mixed, but now model moms pack the runways, including Tennant and Bündchen, Jourdan Dunn, Isabeli Fontana and Natalia Vodianova, who earned a pretty penny— $80,000 to $100,000—to walk Cavalli’s show (and turn up at the party).
Then there were the veteran/rookie pairings seen at Lanvin. Newcomer Melodie Monrose stormed down the runway for the closing look with a brigade of vets including Ajak Deng, Jourdan Dunn, Jeneil Williams and Ataui Deng. The ﬁnale was ampliﬁed—all the models made their curtain calls together. “When we did the ﬁnale [at Missoni] with our arms up and we saw the look of surprise on everyone in the audience,” recalled Monrose, “I think every model wanted to smile.” Rick Owens’ ﬁnale also used the mob mentality while Marc Jacobs sent several groups of models out simultaneously at Vuitton. Individually, they had star power; collectively, they were a galaxy.
The supes were out in force, even if not all were on the runways. Naomi Campbell celebrated her 25-year career with the help of Dolce & Gabbana at parties in all four fashion capitals. Claudia Schiffer was front-row-ready at Salvatore Ferragamo and Chanel, where Vanessa Paradis, Lou Doillon, Elisa Sednaoui and DJ/model Leigh Lezark also watched. It was Kate Moss’s appearance at Christian Dior, though, that sparked paparazzi pandemonium before the show, leaving one photographer with a bloodied forehead.
@kith is moving into children’s. The men’s and women’s streetwear brand has launched Kidset, a Kith kids line located in New York at 64 Bleecker Street. The line includes mini versions of staple Kith pieces like the Astor bomber jacket and the Kith box logo sweatshirts, along with a wall that can display up to 120 pairs of shoes from @adidas, @newbalance, @timberland and more. #wwdfashion
“I just wanted to create this fully rounded character, but I do think what excited me most was just the opportunity to give a group of people representation that I feel needs it. I like to do characters in projects that stand for something and Karolina definitely does, so that was really exciting to me,” @ginnygardner says of her new role in @hulu’s “The Runaways.” Gardner plays Karolina Dean, a queer superhero, which is a rarity for @marvel. Read more about Gardner’s character on WWD.com #wwdeye (📷: @dandoperalski)
@heriethpaul and @gracebol have a moment on the @victoriassecret fashion show 2017. See every look from the runway on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: @giovanni_giannoni_photo) #wwdfashion #victoriassecret #VSFashionShow
“Azzedine has been one of the biggest influences in my life. He has always been such a strong, loving, fatherly figure to me. I call him Papa. His designs are indescribably unique, they are pieces of art. He knew how to make the female form look its loveliest. I have so many memories of him; my favorite might be during my first show with him in Paris. He liked me and he wanted to help me get more work. He called all his friends at Kenzo and Comme des Garcons, and asked them to book me. They said, ‘But she can’t walk!’ And he said, ‘but she has such a great ass!' His friendship and support has been the great privilege of my career. I can't imagine life without him. Repose en paix mon Papa.” - @stephanieseymour tells @wwd. #wwdfashion (📷: @steveeichner) #alaia #azzedinealaia
Azzedine Alaïa, flanked by two of his closest friends, models Stephanie Seymour and Naomi Campbell.
He designed Seymour’s dress for her 1995 wedding to Peter Brant, and treated Campbell (who famously called him Papa), like a daughter. For more on the legendary designer, tap the link in bio. #wwdfashion #alaia #azzedinealaia