What is Hedi Slimane’s mandate at Saint Laurent? Without a clearunderstanding of purpose, it’s difficult to review his fall collectionin a lucid way.
Typically, when a designer takes over a storiedhouse, said mandate is, at least in part, to air out and freshen up,ditching the dated while transforming the best of the founder’siconography into modern wonders that entice the global customer to buythe clothes, but if not the clothes, then the real moneymakers — bags,shoes, fragrance. Yet does it have to be that way? If a woman loves adress, does she really care if she can draw a straight line back to herown mental archive of the founder’s work? Probably not.
Thecollection Slimane showed on Monday night didn’t shout, whisper or evenmouth the words Saint Laurent. But (blasphemous though it may ring tothose who worship at the YSL altar), to do so might not be thedesigner’s mandate. Word around Paris is that the company brass wantsthe collection to skew younger in look in the hopes of engaging ayounger customer. Consider that done. Surely one cannot miss theubiquity of Seventies-ish floppy hats around this city, both at theshows and elsewhere — a trend traceable to Slimane’s spring runway.
Noneof which explains his fall collection. Continuing from his terrificmen’s collection, he worked a grunge theme, “California Grunge” to bespecific. It was all about little dresses — baby dolls, high-collaredschoolgirls, scoop-necked Lolitas — under the cover of big, sloppycardigans and woolly mufflers with interludes of leather-based sexpotsthat swung toward biker babe. What there was, in droves: a sense of thedesigner’s bravado. The man has guts. In absentia: the hallowed originalthought, though one is reminded of Coco Chanel’s admonition, “Onlythose with no memory insist on their originality.” Still, he missed thechance to take a motif well-entrenched in fashion’s public domain andmake it his own.
Then there’s the issue of using expensiveclothes to achieve a deliberately down-market attitude. But Slimaneisn’t the first designer to elevate a bargain-bin look to luxury prices —that, too, is a fashion standard, though he could have pushed the ironyof that ruse more obviously. And yes, there were clothes that theretailers who loved Slimane’s debut collection for spring will loveagain, notably the leather jackets, a few coats and many of the dresses,virtually all charming and some, obviously expensive, such as the lastlook out, an allover embroidered A-line dress with pristine whitecollar.
Few archetypes are more engaging than the undone girl,especially when under her ratty hair, pout, pounding gait and sloppychic lurk a pretty face and skinny body. But is playing a cutesy,disaffected-youth hand enough to propel the house of Saint Laurent intotoday’s luxury stratosphere — especially if the targeted air space isthat in which Chanel and Dior reside? That, too, remains a question.
There'll be no rest for those headed to Europe for men's, as Paris just closed the gap with Milan. According to a provisional calendar released by the Chambre Syndicale, Paris Men's Week will now open a day earlier on January 16. See new highlights on the official lineup on WWD.com. #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @kukukuba)
BREAKING: Jonathan Saunders is leaving @DVF. The designer has resigned from his position as chief creative officer of Diane von Furstenberg, the company said in a statement on Friday. At the time of his hire, von Furstenberg said Saunders’ arrival symbolized and facilitated her stepping back from the day-to-day duties that occupy the work of a full-time creative director. The British designer joined DVF in May 2016 and was in charge of all product categories. #wwdnews
For @versace_official’s spring ad campaign, the brand emphasized the archival prints from the spring tribute collection dedicated to the late Gianni Versace. Closing out the show were five of Gianni’s favorite models: Cindy, Naomi, Carla, Helena, and Claudia. Bowing on December 18, the new campaign is yet another tribute to supermodel-dom as the images by Steven Meisel are fronted by @iamnaomicampbell, @cturlington, @gisele and more. #wwdfashion
Four-time Oscar-nominated actress Annette Bening has been waiting 20 years to play Gloria Graham in "Film Stars Don't Die in Liverpool," which will be released on December 29. The movie about Graham – a Hollywood star known for her controversial relationship with a younger Englishman named Peter Turner – is based off a memoir Turned wrote. "She felt vulnerable to him, because she loved him, she really did love him. And anyone that we really truly are in love with, we re vulnerable to in a very deep way," said Bening. Read our full interview with the modern icon of an actress on WWD.com. #wwdeye (📷: @ninebagatelles; Styled by @cristinaehrlich)
The crisp white button down: a staple that can be dressed up or down and accessorized throughout the decades. Here, on a Art Basel-goer in 2017 on the left and on the iconic Audrey Hepburn in “Roman Holiday” in 1953 on the right. #tbt #wwdfashion (📷: Andrew Morales)
Known for her work with @victoriassecret, 25-year-old model @georgiafowler is raising her profile in Hollywood. Fowler stars in @vincecamuto’s holiday campaign, which launched in partnership with “Pitch Perfect 3.” “Almost every shoot with Vince Camuto, I’ve had to face a fear…It was definitely a challenge. I’m so grateful for it, though. I’ve always wanted to be a pop star, so that was the perfect chance,” Fowler said. Head to WWD.com to read about Fowler’s experience modeling, including at the #VSFashionShow, and her relationship with Nick Jonas. #wwdeye (📷: @jilliansollazzo)
EXCLUSIVE: Huda Kattan just became the first beauty influencer to land a major beauty deal. Kattan's business, @hudabeauty, has received a minority investment from private equity firm TSG Consumer Partners. The brand, which industry sources say is on track to do $200 million in retail sales for 2017, will receive support on product, retail and geographic expansion through the deal. Get all the details on the deal and read @_a_collins' interview with Kattan on WWD.com. Link in bio. (📷: @jgreenery) #wwdbeauty #wwdnews
Peruvian model @juanaburga_official – who is known for walking the runways of @rodarte, @viviennewestwood and @torybuch – is making the move to the big screen with drama “Los Últimos.” The film premiered in Argentina in November and arrives in the U.S. and Europe in 2018. On making the switch from modeling to acting, Burga told WWD: “It’s a completely different thing – a lot of people think it’s similar or try to connect things, especially like getting used to the camera or being looked at all the time or playing these different characrers, but film is a completely different story.” #wwdeye (📷: @jgreenery)
London’s newly opened @designmuseum will look back on the life and work of Azzedine Alaïa in a show that the designer helped to curate before he died of heart failure last month. The retrospective, which Alaïa had worked on with Mark Wilson, chief curator of the @groningermuseum, will look at the impact of his work worldwide. The show, “Azzedine Alaïa: The Couturier,” will run from May 10 to October 7. Read more about the exhibit on WWD.com #wwdnews #wwdfashion (📷: @zefashioninsider)