Balenciaga’s pre-fall collection was a truly transitional one, not only because that’s the essence of the season but because this was the interim lineup between Nicolas Ghesquière’s departure and Alexander Wang’s arrival. Thus, the name invoked during a preview of the collection, designed by the studio team, was the one on the door: Cristobal Balenciaga. From his archive came a saturated floral print used on silk blouses, a bohemian dress and the lining of a black leather kimono jacket; an embroidered moleskin miniskirt and argyle sweaters. The house p.r. director noted that the highly developed technical fabrics of Ghesquière’s tenure were left behind in favor of natural materials, such as wool, shearling, leather, cotton and silk, with a lot of what he called “noble” and “poor” fabrics — chiffon and the kind of sturdy wool typical of naval peacoats — which Cristobal was known to combine in his couture collections. A walk through the unstyled racks of clothes left the impression of a collection of salable merchandise with notes of the Sixties, Seventies and Nineties, with the standouts coming mostly from outerwear, such as a powder blue shearling jacket and a slimly tailored pale pink coat.

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