PARIS — The fashion herds, it seems, are galloping toward higher ground — and possibly stamping out the hoodie along the way. Buyers at the men’s shows in the French capital applauded the move to more polished looks, noting a frenzy for suit jackets.
Not completely on the out, meanwhile, sportswear is being refined and redefined, allowing everyone to take a breather from logos, which slipped by the wayside.
“We’ve been living a sportswear-centric world summed up in cotton and nylon; this week we have turned the page to wool and leather,” noted Justin Berkowitz, men’s fashion director for Bloomingdale’s.
The hunt for elegance may have commenced, but that doesn’t necessarily mean tamer territory, and buyers sniffed out a new animal trend including python, leopard and zebra patterns. Outerwear is still a focus, with the multiplication of options including brighter colored coats.
The Dior show’s futuristic conveyor belt, which moved models slowly down the runway, topped the list of buyers’ favorite venues. They also cited Celine’s perch on the Place de la Concorde — affording views of the Eiffel Tower and the Arc de Triomphe as well as the ornate Opéra Garnier.
Dior also topped the list of favorite collections, while Ami, Celine, Valentino and Dries Van Noten got strong mentions.
The “yellow vest” protests caused a bit of disruption on Saturday, but for Jeffrey Kalinsky of Nordstrom and Jeffrey, it meant lighter traffic.
“The streets were empty, we were zooming around town, the showrooms were quieter, we worked faster — it’s unfortunate because it has scared away both buyers and tourists from Paris,” he said of the demonstrations.
“We proceeded cautiously and with a bit of a heightened awareness. There were street blockages, especially near the Grand Palais…Our day moved along well and without incident,” said Bruce Pask of Bergdorf Goodman and Neiman Marcus.
Here, a roundup of the Paris highlights from retailers:
Justin Berkowitz, men’s fashion director, Bloomingdale’s:
It has been a fantastic week of fashion that felt like a bit of a reset. If there’s one phrase to sum up Paris this season, it’s a turn to elegance.
Favorite collections: Dior, Ami, Lemaire.
Top trends: Tailoring has returned as a fashion statement; shown often in black, gray, or a heritage men’s wear fabrication, it’s updated with fluid constructions, and personal styling to feel modern for today’s consumer.
Evergreen in men’s wear in one form or another, military and utility themes have also been quite common this week. In the same familiar, but a bit new, vein: workwear-inspired pieces, represented by the painter pant or the chore coat, have been omnipresent. Collectively, they provide a balance for the fashion fantasy.
Animal prints have continued. Best when countered by tailoring or military/workwear themes, it was a jungle out there: leopard, zebra, cheetah, python — they’re all in the mix.
Must-have item: A new suit: the uniform of the corporate no more. It’s time to buy some tailoring, and figure out how to make it your own.
Best venue: The Palais Garnier was an incredibly dramatic backdrop for Kris Van Assche’s debut collection for Berluti. Paris can serve up over-the-top architectural elements like no one else; the trip to the Opera did not disappoint.
Say bye-bye to: The full sporty look; athletic-inspired pieces are likely not going anywhere (men appreciate the comfort far too much), but they will need to be counterbalanced with elevated elements to feel modern.
Talent scouting: The name on the lips of many this week is Federico Curradi. His debut at Rochas was romantic and beautiful.
Roopal Patel, senior vice president, fashion director, Saks Fifth Avenue:
Paris men’s fashion week delivered a ton of creativity, vision and powerful fashion. The current lineup leading the men’s world from Hedi Slimane at Celine, Kim Jones at Dior, and Virgil Abloh at Louis Vuitton is creating a new synergy and movement in menswear.
Favorite collections: Celine, Dior, Louis Vuitton, Valentino, Thom Browne, Dries Van Noten, Ami, Heron Preston, Amiri.
Top trends: There is a huge focus on tailoring this season. We saw so many great tailored jackets that can be worn from day to evening to weekend. Fashion and functionality have really started to converge in nontraditional suiting with a modern-day edge.
We also saw a return of the pant in new and exciting styles and fabrications. There is a new wardrobe of pants from tailored, utility, sport and leather. And, of course, there has to be a great assortment of polished shoes to complement this season’s lineup of reimagined pants. Upgraded combat boots, Chelsea boots, brogues, and lace-up boots will be everywhere this season.
Camel, gray, navy and black continue to dominate the men’s runways. Animal prints also had a huge presence. Leopard, tiger and zebra prints were seen in everything from outerwear to accessories.
Other trends include statement outerwear, monochromatic dressing, military dressing, leather, and oversize knitwear.
Must-have item: One of this season’s tailored jackets or statement outerwear pieces.
Best venue: Virgil Abloh brought NYC to Paris at the Louis Vuitton show! He re-created NYC’s Lower East Side in the middle of the Jardin de Tuileries. Virgil’s message of community and bringing his worlds together felt very authentic.
Dior’s presentation with statue-like models gliding down the moving conveyor belt was also a standout this season. It was a high-energy show where fashion really took the lead.
Say bye-bye to: It was interesting to see fewer logos dominate the men’s collections this season. When they did emerge, they were more subtle and luxe than in previous seasons.
Karen Vernet, director of men’s fashion and e-business development, Printemps:
Favorite collections: Dior, Loewe.
Top trends: New tailoring, leather, gender fluidity, mixing luxury materials, the return of sophistication, black.
Must-have item: A nice coat, restyled pants, outerwear.
Best venue: Celine.
Say bye-bye to: Hooded sweatshirts.
Mario Grauso, president, Holt Renfrew:
Favorite collections: Celine — was a serious trip into Sixties prep school with great tweed and duffle coats; Dior — military at its best and some couture draping for men doesn’t hurt; Comme des Garçons shirts — refreshing to see a perfectly designed shirt you immediately want to have; Berluti — the most amazing outerwear in the deepest, most beautiful, colors for both men and women; Raf Simons — the most incredible, intense, colored dusters that even if you don’t wear color you are going to need one of these.
Top trends: Paris felt like a continuation of the trends we started to see in Milan: Military coats, coats, coats — oversize, bright and colorful or tweed; bags, bags, bags (worn all over — cross body, attached to another bag and around your neck); nylon everything (bags, jackets, joggers pants); neutral tones of khaki and beige; preppy collegiate-inspired.
Must-have item: Hermès shearling coat; Celine tweed anything; Berluti duffle coat and for women — a Berluti tux; Louis Vuitton hardside case; Valentino Birkenstock; Comme des Garçons shirts, double shirt; Junya Watanabe mixed media tweed coat and blazer; Raf Simons bright colored duster; Dior nylon saddlebag cross body and military vest paired with the gaiter boots with the CD initials on the toe cap.
Best venue: The Hermès show at the Mobilier National — the French government ministry for state furniture.
Say bye-bye to: Your boring black coat. You’ll need to buy a brightly colored or tweed coat.
Is your open-to-buy up or stable? Stable
Tom Kalenderian, executive vice president of men’s wear, Barneys New York:
Favorite collections: Celine, Jil Sander, Loewe, Dior.
Trends: Wide-leg trousers, pink, tailoring, the great trench, tie-dye effects, tracksuits.
Must-have item: Shearling bomber.
Best venue: The Celine show setting was nothing short of spectacular. From the priceless view from the pop-up building to the animation, including a saxophone player and a high-tech chandelier orb.
New talent: Jon Buscemi launched a strong ready-to-wear collection.
Is your open-to-buy up or stable? Our Paris market open-to-buy is very strong.
Bruce Pask, men’s fashion director, Bergdorf Goodman and Neiman Marcus:
Paris seemed to own the spotlight this men’s wear show season, with numerous epically scaled fashion shows, an enormous number of showrooms representing collections from all over the globe…. and a tremendous amount of creativity on display.
Favorite collections: Mike Amiri presented an astutely elevated, sophisticated take on his in-demand SoCal aesthetic that was terrific. Kim Jones’ Dior Men was a beautiful study of sophistication in tailoring and sportswear, Celine was classic Hedi [Slimane], filled with must-have items in that Mod/rocker aesthetic he articulates so well. Sacai was also a great example of Chitose Abe’s gift for refreshing combinations of fabric and shape. Wardrobe-driven collections here have also been the strongest we’ve seen in a long time, with terrific shows from Ami Alexandre Mattiussi and Officine Générale filled with great wearable pieces in cool fabrics and silhouettes our customer will love.
Trends: The collections in general have exhibited a definitive shift toward the elegant and elevated with more of a polished, tailored edge. This “sartorial shift” has been the big story of the shows with brands like Off-White, Valentino, Louis Vuitton, Dries Van Noten and many others really focusing on tailored silhouettes. Other trends have served to support that theme, such as an emphasis on tailored topcoats, English-influenced tweeds and checks, and more sophisticated takes on suede and leather outerwear and evening. Animal prints have overtaken camouflage as the novelty of choice for the season.
Best venue: This is a tie between Berluti’s mezzanine-tiled runway in the opulent, gilt-covered Paris Opéra and the amazing structure built right in the center of Place de la Concorde for the Celine show, with its giant wall of windows looking out onto all the sights.
Must-have item of the week: A tweed tailored topcoat from any number of designers including Officine Générale and Ami. It’s the outerwear piece for the season.
Fiona Firth, buying director, Mr Porter:
There was a lot going on in Paris, with particularly strong collections from contemporary brands.
Favorite collections: Paris was really strong this season, so it’s difficult to narrow it down. Takahiromiyashita The Soloist and Sacai stood out for their amazing craftsmanship while Dries Van Noten’s return to formal dressing was another highlight. The Row presented luxurious fabrics for the modern man and Fear of God’s luxe sportswear resonated extremely well. Ami Alexandre Mattiussi’s color palette and blend of casual and smart pieces also made for an exceptional collection.
Trends: Tailored fabrics, padded long coats and padded gilets, the return of the tuxedo, camel and browns, checks on tailoring, striped shirts and wider silhouettes.
Best venue: Berluti at the Palais Garnier, Ami at the Théâtre National de Chaillot, and Dior Men on the Champs-de-Mars.
Must-have item of the week: A new volume suit with a padded coat worn over the top.
Franck Nauerz, director of the men’s department, Le Bon Marché:
Top trends: Outdoor; return of the silhouette based on suit jackets: more elegant but worn with a strong pair of sneakers for a cool look.
Must-have item of the week: A jacket that lies between working and outdoor, with metal details and nylon straps.
Best venue: Celine, Place de la Concorde.
Say bye-bye to: Nothing! It’s all about upcycling, this is a trend.
Talent scouting: Celine
Is your open-to-buy up or stable? Up. The men’s market is the trend.
Josh Peskowitz, men’s fashion director at Moda Operandi:
Favorite collections: Ami, Dior, Acne, Christophe Lemaire, Jil Sander and Givenchy.
Top trends: Volume is still the single biggest story, as is soft tailoring and the idea of the “work suit,” which is a version of a shirt, jacket and matching trousers.
Must-have item: The work suit feels very fresh and casual, but in an elevated way.
Best venue: Rue de l’École de Médecine (Sean Suen, Officine Générale).
Say bye-bye to: Tight pants.
Talent scouting: Federico Curradi, whose namesake collection and collection for Rochas were two favorites this week.
Damien Paul, head of men’s wear, Matchesfashion.com:
Favorite collections: Raf Simons, Givenchy, Lemaire, Loewe.
Top trends: Tailoring, tailoring, tailoring, which all felt very modern.
Must-have Item: An oversize coat from Raf.
Best venue: Paris has some amazing undiscovered spaces which we saw, in particular, during appointments rather than shows. By team consensus, the best venue was Palais Garnier where Kris Van Assche premiered his debut runway show for Berluti.
Say bye-bye to: My driver on the Saturday during the protests.
Talent scouting: Watch this space.
Simon Longland, general merchandise manager, men’s wear, accessories and sport at Harrods:
Favorite collections: Dior — Kim raised the bar, again, with a truly unique presentation, bursting with covetable pieces for every man. Form an orderly queue; I will be at the front! Valentino — a collection to truly covet. Every piece from the coats, the knits to the modern take on tailoring was exceptional. Modern, elegant dressing at its finest. Loewe — a collection of long lengths, contrasting materials and heritage-influenced separates all layered with dashes of [Jonathan] Anderson’s quirk to lift the mood. Dries Van Noten — Dries’ signature was prominent with a collection that was equally balanced between desirable work and weekend wear. Working with an earthy color palette, the collection played with lengths and volumes.
Best venue: Dior — The unassuming black box exterior with the conveyor belt staging inside was inspired. The simple venue allowed the exceptional collection to speak for itself, and for me, it was the show of the autumn-winter 2019 season.
Trends: The suit: The seemingly ordinary suit has had a new lease on life this season as designers explored new cuts, fabrics and style. Statement overcoats in every shape, size and texture. Key styles included teddy bear textures, leather trenches, bold and bright colors and oversize shapes. The Puffa — could this be the overcoat style of the season? It was clear that a puffa is a must-have, whether in a crop or a super-long length. It never loses its iconic chunky nature. Leather — autumn-winter ’19 taught us to invest in leather, particularly with trousers and coats. Statement knits replaced slogan sweats and are making their mark with chunky, heritage styles as well as bright, bold, intarsia-layering pieces. Complementing this is the need for statement, oversize scarves. Utility — a trend that remains key on the agenda, designers really explored this trend through practical features, but of course always in a super-elevated way. They championed khaki as the new color, as we had seen previously in Milan. Cord and suede seem to be the new fabric of choice, seen as separate pieces, or head-to-toe.
Say bye-bye to: Slogans — Sportswear remains relevant and is woven across most collections, but this season, it appears cleaner, sharper and more luxurious. Overall, the directional message of the season was resoundingly about a more polished aesthetic whether that be sartorially, or relaxed, so an elevated sportswear offering perfectly complements this notion.
Talent scouting: Now that would be telling.
Bosse Myhr, director of men’s wear and technology buying and merchandising at Selfridges:
Favorite collections: Sacai, Acne, Nicomede, a new brand.
Top trends: A new take on suits and tailoring — playing with different ways of fabrication and color palettes. Mixing materials, animal prints, statement hats at Raf Simons, head-to-toe tonal dressing, pop culture punk, down jackets.
Must-have item: Accessories, accessories, accessories — micro bags and harnesses. Duffel coats.
Best venue: Celine’s show venue directly on the Place de la Concorde — you simply cannot imitate that view.
Talent scouting: Nicomede: Nicomede Talavera has relaunched this season with a very strong new concept based on reimagined men’s wear classics. His partnerships with Gloverall for duffels, Kangol for bucket hats and Puffa for puffa coats are key standouts of the season.
Riccardo Tortato, fashion director ecommerce at Tsum.ru, men’s fashion director at Tsum Moscow and DLT St. Petersburg:
Favorite collections: Dior, Amiri, Valentino, Saint Laurent.
Top trends: All brands are twisting and turning to more sophisticated collections, and almost all designers presented blazers in their collections. The question is: Will the final customer be able to change the way they dress so quickly, from street informal to more formal and sophisticated?
I appreciated the consistency of Vetements. With everybody changing so dramatically they were able to stick to their DNA.
Must-have Item: Pointy ankle boots and long Raf Simons coat. I loved the belt bag by Amiri.
Best venue: Berluti, Ami, Vetements.
Say bye-bye to: The hoodie.
Talent scouting (hot new brands): Ludovic de Saint Sernin (even if his products are still not ready for a department store).
Lee Goldup, men’s wear buyer, Browns Fashion:
Favorite collections: Dior, Alyx, Sacai, Issey Miyake, ByBorre.
Trends: Tailoring, animal prints, chunky-soled shoes (opposed to sneakers) and long top-coats below the knee. Plus lots of leather!
Must-have item: Dior utility vest with Alyx buckles.
Best venue: It’s hard not to say Dior. The show setup with the conveyor belt was just phenomenal. Combined with the music and general vibe, Kim definitely stole Paris Fashion Week for the second season in a row.
Say bye-bye to: Anything oversize — it felt like things were made to fit again.
Talent scouting: I never want to give the game away too much…
Is your open-to-buy up, down or stable? Our OTB is up for the vast majority of our brands as we had such a strong [fall 2018] season.
Tyler Franch, fashion director, Hudson’s Bay:
Favorite collections: Ami, Dior, Junya Watanabe, Alyx.
Top trends: A major return to tailoring continues this season with fresh updates in tech fabrics, denim and fluidity. Though streetwear as we know it seems to be on the decline on the runways, it remains the most important message for contemporary collections. Statement outerwear continues to be strong with oversize puffers, animal prints, fleece details and bold color. A piece of neon knitwear is a must! Love this as a simple turtle with your tailoring or worn more street.
Must-have item: A pair of Jacquemus convertible cargo pants, acid wash pants from Wooyoungmi and a sash-adorned suit or coat from Dior.
Best venue: The Ami show took place at Musée National de la Marine where camel curtains retracted during the final walk to reveal the most perfectly romantic view of the Eiffel Tower. A major teary-eyed moment and not in the slightest bit cheese.
Say bye-bye to: Slim pants and anything you thought you knew about sartorial dressing.
Jeffrey Kalinsky, vice president, designer fashion director, Nordstrom; president and founder, Jeffrey:
Favorite collections: Dior, Dries Van Noten, Celine, Amiri.
Top trends: The biggest news is that everyone is celebrating sartorial clothing again, from suits to blazers to great coats, there was [barely] a sneaker on the runway, it was all boots and shoes. I think it’s good, it’s time. Streetwear is a part of our vocabulary now. I don’t think people are going to stop buying hoodies and sneakers, that’s going to continue because it’s part of their wardrobe, and for sure there are lots of great streetwear options in the market, but it’s nice to offer guys really chic clothes again. They’ve been asking for it, it seems like every suit we have, we’re selling and we just needed more, so now we are going to have an offering from all of these great, cool designers. The other trend: I saw so much leather on the runway, leather pants, leather jeans, leather coats, and it’s been a while since there’s been so much.
Must-have item: A beautiful Celine camel coat; some version of a combat boot.
Best venue: There was something really dramatic about the presentation at Dries, I thought it really set the clothes off well, and I loved the streetscape at Celine, being able to see right onto the Place de la Concorde, it made sense, it said these clothes are for the cool urban guy.
Is your open-to-buy up, down or stable? Our men’s business is great and I think there’s something about the men’s market that has an energy that in a lot of ways is more than what I see in the women’s market. The men’s consumer is consuming more than ever. We’ve got plenty of money to spend in Paris, our budgets are up.
Federica Montelli, head of fashion at La Rinascente, Milan:
We are focusing on upping our sartorial intake and further implementing our luxury offer for our Milan and Rome stores. Sports-luxe brands are still a focus, and we keep on expanding our brand offer in this segment, as it is successful for the younger and international clientele.
Favorite collections: Dior, Celine, Valentino, Ami, Louis Vuitton.
Trends: New take on tailoring — relaxed, effortless and fluid; a sophisticated color palette, from camels and browns to bordeaux and orange, olive green and dark grays. Voluminous suits and coats, a gentleman influence with a counterpart of a punk attitude.
Must-have item: Suits with a relaxed leg and a cross-blazer, leather pants, leather coats, long and wide coats and trenches, animal-print coats, chunky moccasins and heavy-sole biker boots.
Best venue: It’s a tie between Louis Vuitton’s representation of Manhattan’s Lower East Side (complete with musical performance) and Dior’s tableau vivant with models on a moving runway.
New talent: We picked up Rochas’ first men’s collection designed by Federico Curradi, which we found particularly inspiring. It’s not a new-in for us, but a confirmation; Jacquemus’ second collection for men.
Is your open-to-buy up or stable? Budgets are up. We are dedicating more and more square meters to men in our stores, thanks to the positive sales trend.
Emmanuel de Bayser, cofounder of The Corner, Berlin:
You cannot copy qualitative outerwear. Customers still understand and spend for top material and cut.
Favorite collections: Celine, Dior, Dries Van Noten.
Trends: Soft, easy, ample tailoring; streetwear influences, and touches of color.
Must-have item: Coats, soft workwear shoes, scarves.
Best venue: Celine. I love the Place de la Concorde, with both a spectacular and intimate view (the venue was not huge). The saxophone at the finale brought a nice human, poetic touch.
Say bye-bye to: Expensive, alternative and cheap-looking fashion.
New talent: I like the Ami take on women — a nice color palette and oversize looks; the Jacquemus modern, unpretentious energy, and Heron Preston for the young kids.
Is your open-to-buy up or stable? Up for top brands, down for the others.
Ahmet Öcal, men’s buying director at Beymen, Istanbul:
We are happy with the comeback of tailoring and elegance. We will focus more on this kind of price and quality, matching items and timeless pieces with a classy design touch.
Favorite collections: Dior, Dries Van Noten, Valentino, Louis Vuitton, Off-White.
Trends: Back to elegance; tailoring, with long, masculine coats, modernized suits, a pleated trouser and tie-and-shirt combination; less “shout,” therefore fewer logos; monochrome color stories, and all-black looks.
Must-have items: Belted coats and long, double-breasted oversize jackets from Dries Van Noten; Valentino Undercover collaboration prints and the new version of the Bounce sneaker from Valentino; saddle bags and conveyor belts from Dior; cowboy boots from Off-White, and the floor-length black coat from Raf Simons.
Best venue: Definitely the Dior show. It was an original setting with a long, moving pavement on which models posed like statues and sculptures — it was epic.
Say bye-bye to: Logomania and vintage-look sportswear with extreme prices.
Is your open-to-buy up or stable? Our budget for brands which are showing in Paris is getting higher every season.