Louis-Gabriel Nouchi took to the runway for the first time, choosing a voluminous brick warehouse setting to display his refined collection of men’s wear for spring under his young label LGN. Cuts were loose but the lines were clean and pure—inspiration came from a beauty-obsessed monk in Japan. The designer elevated daily staples like suit coats, bombers and even shorts by using luxury fabrics. A dark gold bomber billowed out just enough to soften the look; a rich hydrangea print on a black background was used for a kimono-flavored house coat—the silhouette reined in this time, and falling straight.

Touches of unfinished edges appeared here and there — those gaping holes from an unattached section of neckline border, for example — a label signature.

Other playful sides: a pink Bermuda and jacket ensemble, blocks of color added by applying knitting over sections of a white t-shirt and shorts made of basketball jersey material and a long, chunky knit dress, caveman style but with sexy slits running along the sides. He also used a double jacquard cotton fabric to build a suit, soft and structured at once.

Thus was the debut of an experienced designer flush with new financial backing from French real estate company Duval. No, he didn’t burn down the temple—the route chosen by Yukio Mishima’s monk in “The Temple of the Golden Pavillion,” a book that reflects on the notion of beauty in a world of crisis. Instead, he took the high road, pushing elegance with his meditative approach.

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