You don’t expect mighty Hermès to stick its neck out with daring, cutting-edge men’s wear. Rather, you can reliably read its runway as a further endorsement of where male fashion had already been heading.
Heavy-soled shoes have been trending for a while, sneakers for even longer, and here they were underpinning every exit parading at the Maison de la Radio, the Eiffel Tower and the barren trees flanking the Seine offering a chic backdrop.
Designer Véronique Nichanian has been nudging Hermes in a more nonchalant, ath-leisure direction for some time. Models thrust their hands deep into the pockets of their elastic-waist trousers, worn in the offhand manner of sweat pants.
Papery windbreakers and parkas in glazed calfskin announced the shiny surfaces cited as a theme in the show notes. Nichanian often combined multiple textures in a single garment, fronting a black cashmere blouson in mink or adding a glossy sleeve here, a lustrous panel there, to handsome double-breasted leather coats.
Silhouettes were measured, but for bulky fisherman turtlenecks and sweatshirts quilted with down feathers. But what really tripped up this collection were the offbeat colors, with raspberry, Dijon mustard and turquoise shades sharing real estate on some exits.
The show climaxed with a run of chic topcoats, leather jackets and alterna-tuxes, all in black, which must mean it is indeed the new black.