After a standout season for Milan, the last stop was Paris and it certainly didn’t disappoint.
A relatively normal schedule of physical fashion shows has just wrapped at Paris Fashion Week after a strange few years. Following the easing of the Covid-19 pandemic restrictions, several designers returned to the catwalk for autumn/winter 2022, while more international editors and influencers flew around the world to sit front row at the big shows.
Scroll down to see a roundup of shows that left their mark this season.
Last season, Miuccia Prada’s chopped-up Miu Miu high school uniforms and corporate attire went viral. They appealed to a youth yearning for Y2K-inspired skimpiness, lifting beige, grey, and blue poplin to heights as high as the hemlines of those super miniskirts. What comes next though? Well, Mrs P didn’t shy away from referencing the success of her previous collection, simply broadening it by creating a sportier, more gender-inclusive version. Read more about the Miu Miu show here.
‘Fashion that entices a reaction,’ read the show notes, and Jonathan Anderson’s Loewe collection delivered just that. Anderson created a surreal atmosphere with sculpted 3D-printed fibre tunics and flowing skirts. Trapeze dresses that, upon closer investigation, had objects hidden inside them. One even had what looked like a child’s car! Surrealism was carried forward with draped gowns hanging from lip breastplates or gathered beneath balloon bras, as well as fitted jackets scruffed up at the neck or chest. Anderson made fashion and art collide. Find the out more here.
This Louis Vuitton collection was dedicated to youth and “hope for the future, for a better world,” according to Nicolas Ghesquiere. Sweatshirts and large polo shirts included prints of David Sims’ 1990s photos of teen models. Panier pockets and papal peplums provided the historical element, which was masterfully combined with the modern to avoid veering into costume territory. Also, if you weren’t aware, ties are back. Read more here.
This season, there’s been an elephant on the runway. While the rest of the world is watching a war unfold in Ukraine, fashion has been charging forward. O ccasionally though, fashion shows have the ability to capture precise moments in history. Demna created a Balenciaga show in a massive purpose-built snowglobe on the outskirts of Paris that will go down in history as one of the most powerful — and political — statements ever witnessed on the catwalk. This is the sort of show that will be remembered for decades.
“The war in Ukraine has triggered the pain of a past trauma I have carried in me since 1993, when the same thing happened in my home country and I became a forever refugee,” read a personal note from the Georgian designer that was on every seat. “This is why working on this show was so incredibly hard for me. Because in a time like this, fashion loses its relevance and its actual right to exist. Fashion week feels like some kind of absurdity.”
Read everything you need to know about the show here.
This show was Owens at his finest. He provided a collection that was uplifting, while simultaneously engaging the senses. Models emerged from a curtain of fog (produced from portable devices they carried about) and a dense cloud of the fragrance from Owen’s collaboration with Aesop (releasing later this month). Evening gowns in dusty sequins, lush velvet, and recycled cashmere, draping from the shoulders and wrapping around the body, opened the display. Tailored jackets, several cropped, were paired with slinky bias-cut skirts.
Dries Van Noten
This season, Van Noten provided an immersive experience by bringing guests on a personal tour of his AW22 collection, which was housed in the abandoned mansion, Hotel de Guise. The designer displayed his clothing as well as his recently released beauty range, which includes perfume and lipsticks. Carlo Mollino, an architect and photographer, inspired him, as did erotic polaroids of naked and semi-dressed women discovered after his death. Guests were able to touch intricately layered textures, smell new Dries fragrances, and examine the opulent eclectic outfits exhibited on mannequins up close. The clothes were obviosuly made to be worn, but they were also worthy of being honoured as magnificent objects of the best craftsmanship and ingenuity.
Introducing ‘Stella by Stella’ for AW22, a collaboration between Stella McCartney and artist Frank Stella. The collection included the whole range of Stella’s work, from minimalism to post-painterly abstraction. Knitted bodysuits, silky slip dresses worn beneath slouchy blazers, and workwear inspired by artist uniforms were among the looks. Some of Stella’s actual art was printed onto dresses and gowns too. The designer also got creative, using leather alternatives we’d not encountered before. The show was dedicated to Ukraine and closed with John Lennon’s Give Peace a Chance playing. Read more about the show here.
Andreas Kronthaler for Vivienne Westwood
When you go to a show in the French capital’s once-infamous red-light district, you expect a full-fledged production. This is especially true when the name Andreas Kronthaler for Vivienne Westwood appears on the marquee over the door. True to tradition, Vivienne’s life partner gave “an elegant tribute to the world of theatre” for AW22, a “space where people express themselves freely without censorship,” he wrote in this season’s show notes. Answering the question “Who is Andreas Kronthaler?” the collection presented 62 responses, concluding with a virginal bride – played by Bella Hadid – in a veil covered with scarlet brocade flowers. Read more on the bold collection here.
This was a show viewed through rose-tinted glasses, because pink was the subject of Pierpaolo Piccioli’s fascination this season. The name of his latest Valentino collection was “pink-out” — as in a blackout, but pink. Obviously. Everything was a rich, vivid fuschia hue, from the stairway that formed the backdrop, to the benches that attendees perched on, to the garments worn by VIPs like Zendaya and, of course, to the enormous coed collection presented on the catwalk.
Although Elsa Schiaparelli might have called it ‘Shocking Pink’, Pierpaolo labelled it “monotone,” with the goal of removing any palette distractions to attract attention to the striking silhouettes on display. And there were many of them, including trapeze-shaped jackets, Medieval-inspired cutouts, and flowing capes with all the sequinned trimmings. There’s more, though! Halfway through the event, all-black outfits appeared to break up the retina-scorching tone of pink that had been dominating the show.