The art of corsetry has led to the creation of one of the most historically famous garments, with a more than 500-year fashion legacy. For the fall 2022 season, this legend made a big comeback as a key trend. As seductive as ever, the corset was updated with protective and futuristic elements for a modern appeal.
In the case of Balmain, designer Olivier Rousteing presented a lineup full of protective padding designs inspired by motocross gear that resulted in a tough-chic, mixed media of metal plates and silk bustiers that had a science-fiction edge. Dior’s Maria Grazia Chiuri was inspired by motorcycles as well as the potential of technology to augment the functionality of clothes and an overall need for protection. This resulted in a mixture of BMX-meets-American-football-inspired bustiers that exemplified her longtime effort of challenging the male gaze.
More traditional corsets were seen at Carolina Herrera, where Wes Gordon delivered an array of bustier gowns with floor-sweeping tulle skirts. “That is the Herrera client,” he said when referring to the head-turning eveningwear.
It was designer Fausto Puglisi of Roberto Cavalli that took corsetry to the fetish territory. “Erotica for me is like Coca-Cola, it always inspired me, from Junya [Watanabe] to Jean Paul Gaultier,” he said about his main influences. Gaultier has shown himself to be a master of corsets and pop culture, as with the golden bustier worn by Madonna for her “Blonde Ambition” tour, which has iconic status. Puglisi’s view of erotica translated into beautifully crafted leather harnesses and corsets that pushed the dominatrix trend un-poetically forward for fall. But no one put bustiers at the center of their collection as Donatella Versace did for Versace. Corsetry was everywhere, from layering pieces under power suits and top coats to formfitting silk corset-shaped dresses, and even in novelty pieces in outerwear, such as puffers with built-in corsets. Sexy is back at the house of Versace.
Here are some of the best corsets of the season.