In a season where even avant-gardist houses like Prada are chasing a sense of “normality,” “real” brands like Ami — which was conceived around creating a wardrobe based on the kinds of pieces that founder Alexandre Mattiussi and his friends like to wear — are having their moment in the spotlight.
That the designer’s take on “normal” also happens to be nailed on the elusive, holy-grail of put-togetherness that is French cool, only helps. Mattiussi used a ton of French-centric neon signs — from local gas and pharmacy signs to the word Paris spelled out in colored letters — to light up the runway for a collection inspired by what he said was “Paris, youth, energy, dynamism. It’s like a street in Paris by night.”
There were no highfalutin concepts, attempts to join the season’s geeks or any other such trends. Instead, the designer in this infectiously upbeat show kept the focus on great clothes, adding happy shots of color to the mix.
The opening look was an instant mood-booster, layering a purple crewneck over a bubblegum-pink shirt, baggy black pants and a coat in a yellow and red Prince of Wales check — with one pink collar and one side of the shirt artfully hanging out, just so. Not forgetting the bag, part of the brand’s new hook-up with Eastpak.
This pleasing mix of energetic jolts of color and sartorial cloths continued in silhouettes built on well-cut, good old wardrobe basics with a slight retro edge spanning the denim jacket, the blouson in double-faced leather, argyle knits, plaid shirts and updated outerwear classics, including a terrific hooded raincoat in a vibrant red plaid.
As ever, the Ami guy is not looking to get high on fashion, but he gets off on style.