As the Paris and Milan fashion weeks draw to a close (sigh) there’s a few shows which have stood out amongst the crowd.
Be it for their fashion, their guests or their set-up, the following are some of the most talked-about events of the spring-summer 2023 collections, which call for a lot of patterns, open chests, silk and wide-fit fashion.
Louis Vuitton and the Wizard of Oz at Fashion Week
Taking cues from Virgil Abloh’s 2018 Wizard of Oz-inspired collection, LV put on a fashion week show worthy of every single bit of press coverage it received. With a canary yellow runway spanning and twisting across the Louvre’s courtyard, a marching band, live music from Kendrick Lamar and scattered giant balloons, Louis Vuitton’s show was a memorable tribute to Virgil Abloh, who passed away earlier on this year.
The collection, a playful re-visit of Abloh’s work for the luxury fashion house, was fresh and fun, taking cues from childhood and seeping it into high-fashion runway looks. We saw beaded necklaces, bold colour combinations, and flower patterns which, in Abloh’s words, represent “the untainted vision of a child, not yet spoiled by societal programming.”
Check out DDW’s coverage of the Louis Vuitton fashion show here.
Versace’s runway was also set in a courtyard, in a paved and flowered outdoor runway which looked complex and slightly maze-like. In true Versace opulence, the courtyard was dotted with large green rotating columns, exhibiting golden torsos at the very top.
The clothes sported a lot of stripes, complementary colours and tight cropped vests, often accessorised with large vases and futuristic-looking sunglasses which made Versace’s appearance on the runway look both classic and futuristic. One of the stand-out looks, however, was the patterned leather-cut fabric in black, showcased in the form of a t-shirt styled with slick-back hair and cargo pants.
Check out DDW’s coverage of the Versace fashion show here.
Rick Owens and the Hanging Fireball
To the beat of some bass-infused techno, Rick Owens lit up the Palais de Tokyo with some large pendant fire-balls hanging from the sky evoking hell and the current global climate which Owens himself has been contemplating. Models, who had the challenging task of walking down the stairs in the staple Rick Owens’ heels, did so to the beet of some techno bunker, powerful soundtrack to accompany one of Rick Owens’ most colourful collections to date.
Despite not being extremely well received by the die-hard Owens fanatics, the SS23 collection represents a change for the brand’s primarily dark-coloured collections. From exaggerated shoulders and tailoring to promote long elongated figures, Owens conveyed an otherworldly appeal to his clothes on the runway, which he complemented by risking colours and exuberant textures into the show.
Check out DDW’s coverage of the Rick Owens fashion show here.
Dior and the Fashion Week Gardens
Set in a make-believe garden which interlinks Dior and painter Duncan Grant’s homes in southern France and Britain, the Dior’s SS23 runway felt like a romanticised European summer. Paired with the repetitive chanting, the show felt surreal and detached from reality, a peculiar contrast to the highly utilitarian wear that the luxury house showcased for the season.
Dior’s show was gardener chique; designs of traditional utilitarian wear were re-interpreted and romanticised with asymmetric cut jumpsuits, large brim hats and saddle bags galore. Even the suits on the runway were highly complimented for their original and tasteful tailoring which was sometimes paired with shorts and other times with extra-long trousers.
Check out DDW’s coverage of the Dior fashion show here.
Loewe and the Screens
Loewe’s runway was void of any directionality or sense of place; instead, it opted for an entirely white backdrop through which models dressed in screens and grass walked to the beat of disorientating experimental music. The setting itself regulates the mood for the collection, which is equally experimental as it is provocative for current fashion debates.
Loewe’s showcase at Fashion Week was anything but ordinary. Experimenting with grass-grown garments and screens as accessories, the collection was a mix and match of new technologies seeping into the fashion world.
As Anderson himself explains, the show was created in order to spark a discussion on the roles of nature and technology and how these are intertwined into the world of fashion. The screens, in particular, are a reference to how one cannot walk outside nowadays without seeing somebody on their phone, leading Anderson to wonder what would happen if we directed the attention a screen demands onto the clothes we wear.
Céline and the Fashion Week Rockstars
Set against a backdrop of round lights, the Céline show took place at Palais the Tokyo. With hands in their pockets, models walked the runway wearing embellished blouses, sheer, skinny neckties, sleek suits, leather trousers, and denim infused with an androgynous rock spirit. But the true star of the show, at least in terms of social media, was the ever-famous K-Pop stars Lisa from Blackpink and V from BTS, alongside Park Bo-gum, Eddie Redmayne and Thomas Brodie-Sangster.
Céline evoked rock and roll in tassels and thin neckties mixed with black leather composed outfits worthy of a punk-rock concert.
Models walked the show with attitude, the fashion making every single one of them look like a notorious rock celebrity with leopard and glittery suits.
Funnily enough, almost every single model was wearing a similar version of some simple sunglasses, furthering the air of mystery and fame surrounding Céline’s SS23 collection.