Despite – or thanks to? – the digitalization of Paris Fashion Week’s Fall/Winter 2021-2022 edition, designers have been very creative in the ways they presented their collections. Discover the best of Paris Fashion Week below.
Cover photo: © Marine Serre
Best of Paris Fashion Week
“I love contrasts, so for the more voluminous winter pieces, I wanted a small space. I don’t know if this is because of the times we live in, but I wanted something warm, lively. I imagined the models doing a show for themselves, going from room to room, crossing each other in staircases, piling their coats up in the cloakroom and going up to the next floor to get changed. And I thought of the shows that Karl would tell me about, back in the day, a long time ago, when the models would dress themselves and do their own make-up,” says Virginie Viard describing the atmosphere of the Chanel Fall-Winter 2021/22 Ready-to-Wear show. After (almost) a decade of showing in the Grand Palais, the presentation for this collection was forced to move elsewhere, since the palace is closed for renovations. Nonetheless, Viard found a smaller space to show this voluminous collection. Chez Castel seemed to be the right spot for the show – a club opened in the early sixties. “So, I decided to go to Castel,” Viard explained, “I like Castel so much for its many salons, the spiral staircase, its bar, the journey through this venue, its little house style, where the models can get changed, dressed and undressed, do their make-up together, and have fun like a girls night in. It’s very sensual.”
The collection perfectly merged with its ambiance. “This collection is a mix of two influences: the ambiance of ski holidays, which I adore, and a certain idea of cool Parisian chic, from the 1970s to now,” Viard vividly explained. These two influences were clearly visible in the collection. The former expressed itself in faux-fur snow boots and après-ski jackets, while the latter was made visible by models wearing short skirts, bare midriffs and chunky tailoring.
Furthermore sequinned ballet flats, a man’s black shirt with a white collar and cuffs under a suit in lurex, a tweed kilt over a knitted jumpsuit reminded of a big name in fashion. “Today some of these silhouettes make me think of Stella Tennant’s allure, the way she wore certain pieces, it was so Chanel.”
A collection born from a moment of reflection, captures the very essence of Marine Serre. Core seizes a moment of systemic revolution within
the fashion industry – a forceful movement brought to life through a trinity of contrasting mediums. “This last year has been difficult for everyone, but there is no longer any question about it, things must be done differently. We want to bring Ecofuturism to the streets,” explained Serre.
The collection was built on three pillars: the documentary, the book, and the ready-to-wear-collection encapsulate the transformation and regeneration that lies at the very heart of the brand’s aesthetic and ethic. Every shape and every fabric tell a story of creation and an endless reshaping and mutations into different embodiments – the ethos of Marine Serre is one of rebirth.
Every season the Ecofuturistic approach of Marine Serre evolves, strengthening the core values of environmental consciousness, resilience,
and accessibility. For fall/winter 2021 the collection is composed by regenerated styles for its 50% consolidating the other half with products
realized by using recycled fibres. Forceful steps are taken towards a new way of consuming fashion: the regenerated garments and accessories
of the White Line will be available at a reworked price point making Ecofuturistic pieces accessible to a broader public.
Breaking with the LOEWE formula, creative director Jonathan Anderson escapes the boundaries to define new ones. An exploded palette of bright, acrylic hues is juxtaposed in graphic compositions then mapped onto abstract silhouettes that swing around the body, drape all over it and sprout out of it. The sheer joy of fashion-making is harnessed to convey an idea of dressing up as an audacious act, marking a point of departure towards new grounds.
Geometric lines played the leading role, in both silhouettes and surface treatment. Curvy lines were alternated with straight ones, just as fluidity with firmness. It resulted in a very original collection, standing far apart from previous collections. Daring, yet definitely part of the best of Paris Fashion Week.
‘Duvet dressing’ was the central theme of Acne Studio’s Fall/Winter 2021-2022 collection. It led to a collection of voluminous yet shaped silhouettes, soft and worn fabrics, contrasting moments of sweetness
and elegant refinement. From ‘textured knits have the effect of a long-loved teddy bear’ to ‘wrapping, draping and ruching’ as the key elements of the collection’s silhouette.
“I was thinking about what happens when we emerge from isolation, the same but also somehow different,” Acne Studios’ creative director Jonny Johansson explained. “This collection is a dreamscape that begins with soft pastel colours, before awakening into monochromatic clarity, which is an ode to the white or black clothes worn for rituals in our life cycle, like weddings and funerals.“
While many of us dream about getting out of lockdown, Johansson quite enjoyed his time at home. While spending his time with family on the countryside of Sweden, he had plenty of time to create something innovative. Fuzzy fabrics and body-wrapping silhouettes played an important role. Because being out of lockdown – or escaping it by swapping the city for the countryside – doesn’t mean clothes should be impractical.
Issey Miyake’s Fall/Winter 2021-2022 collection reminded of old sci-fi movies; it seems smart to peek into the future in times like these; Satoshi Kondo wasn’t the only one who did so. Kondo integrated elements of nature and combined these with technological influences and the house’s siganture style. Both timeless and sci-fi, the collection consisted of a wide range of ton-sur-ton looks. Circular cut-out dresses were very future-oriented, while items like sleeveless cardigans felt more inspired by the zeitgeist. Overall, Kondo created both a future- and lockdown-proof sentiment.
Infused with radiant mystery, power, an aura, cavalières, stride forth in the lines of this new collection. If asked, they might not even recall these last few months, preferring to remember more uncomplicated times. It’s urgent now to live again, to venture forth into the unknown, to gain a new lease of life. It is a time of rebuilding: so much remains to be explored, beginning with womanhood, a concept that has changed quite a lot these past few years. Time flies, which is surely a sign that we need to reinvent ourselves. This collection’s inspiration was found in the desire to explore new mythologies. Clothes that are just as suitable for nightlife as they are for our daily routines show that opposites do not longer oppose.
Hermès Fall/Winter 2021-2022 presentation was centred around New York, Paris and Shanghai. In the Big Apple, dancers kicked-off Hermès’ presentation.The Prologue took place at the Armory Show, under supervision of Madeleine Hollander. After the following runway show in Paris, dancers in Shanghai took over – under the direction of choreographer Gu Jiani – injecting renewed energy into the collection. According to Nadège Vanhee-Cybulski, it was important to recreate the adrenaline of a physical fashion show. Her message to the world is to start live again; the collection was all about resilience, perfectly suited for both times like these and more uncomplicated times in the future.
Louis Vuitton’s Nicolas Ghesquière went back to what he’s so incredible good at: creating jaw-dropping fashion shows. Exactly one year ago, he left everyone in awe while showing a collection accompanied by 200 choral singers. This year, things were more sober. That is, according to Ghesquière’s standards. He created a runway of Louvre’s Devon wing, where his models passed ancient sculptures and other objects.
In collaboration with Fornasetti, Ghesquière created some remarkable items – including its famous hand-drawn faces of ancient women featured on leather goods and clothing. Furthermore, both silhouettes and surfaces were dominating. Voluminous layers were were emphasized by the creative director’s choice of materials. Looks consisting of leather, tule, voile, tweed and even lammy drew attention and made the watcher long for pre- or post-pandemic eras. Ghesquière explained he wanted something impactful; a moment of fashion. That certainly succeeded. With every look, Ghuesquière sparked joy and made us dream of better times ahead.