Tailoring is having a moment, and not just in men’s wear. For his fall women’s collection for Acne Studios, shown during men’s fashion week in Paris, creative director Jonny Johansson delivered a fresh take on power dressing geared toward a Millennial audience.
Working off an Eighties playbook of padded shoulders, oversize volumes and nipped-in waists, the designer pinched, ruched, twisted and tucked jackets into new shapes, starting with the softly deconstructed pantsuit that opened the show. With its sloped shoulders, generous sleeves and single side button, it had major attitude.
Johansson said he was inspired by his 15-year-old son Frasse and his friends, and how they destroy preconceived notions of dressing.
“I’ve been trying to portray when young women are interested in more mature and iconic sophisticated fashion,” he explained backstage. “I’m interested in that transformation when you’re young, and you want something more potent and mature.”
Johansson experimented with size, blowing up a striped gray wool blazer that was belted and worn as a dress, with ribbed leg warmers and hiking boots, à la Hailey Baldwin. He broke the silhouette, chopping the bottom off an anthracite jacket worn with full, high-waisted pants and elbow-length brown leather gloves.
Not all of it worked — a jacket with a ruched midriff and metallic clip fastening looked oddly stretched — but at their best, the looks proposed an off-kilter take on dressing for success that felt perfectly in tune with Acne’s Scandi-cool aesthetic.
Transgender model Krow, who earlier in the week walked in the Balmain men’s show, proved the perfect androgynous muse in a taupe blazer tucked into paper-bag-waist pants, worn with sturdy boots and a faux fur messenger bag with a chunky chain strap.
“There’s a lot of women who are attracted by streetwear today, and that’s pretty cool, but I also I feel like I want to show the other side of what women’s wear is also proposing,” Johansson said. Consider it mission accomplished.