Givenchy models walk on water at Paris Fashion Week | Culture & Leisure

PARIS (AP) — For the first major collection of the Paris Fashion Week men’s season, Givenchy models walked on water.

A giant clam filled with milky-white water and frothy mist in the courtyard of the Ecole Militaire served as a flowing runway where models, often shirtless and wearing waterproof shoes, stomped and splashed toward a blinding light.

Matthew M. Williams clearly wanted to make a splash in his first standalone menswear show since his 2020 nomination. But has the American designer dived deep enough?

Here are some highlights from Wednesday’s Spring/Summer 2023 shows:

GIVENCHY MAKES A SHALLOW SPLASH

It was just the name of Audrey Hepburn’s Givenchy haute couture. Williams’ vision is urban, sporty and streamlined.

The American designer, former collaborator of Lady Gaga and Kanye West, has once again brought his streetwear touch to the catwalks of upper Paris. The muse this season was the style of Jamaican reggae singer Alkaline, who worked on the show’s soundtrack.

These looks were defined by long, loose silhouettes, frayed hemlines, chunky chains and fearsome masks.

Sightings of Williams’ past have produced many looks. The laser-cut house-logo bombers that opened the show were inspired by those the designer admired in Harlem, New York. Elsewhere, California street styles mixed with preppy styles, such as ripped tailored pants.

Williams said of her behind-the-scenes collection that “everything is grounded in reality. I could see the guy in every existing look on the street – for me, that’s a really modern approach.

But sometimes that everyday vibe let the collection down. For example, a simple pink tracksuit, worn open across a bare chest with a gold chain, didn’t feel developed enough as an idea for the haute couture show.

Yet the tailoring was strong throughout – as expected for the house – for example in a wide black 80s coat that cut a slim shape.

DIOR CRUISE SPA

For Haute Couture Week, Dior is bringing back to life a 19th-century floating spa that once existed on an elegant barge at Pont-Neuf.

The spa, which was called Les Bains de la Samaritaine, was reputed to be the most luxurious in Western Europe at the time and the mother of modern luxury spas.

This season, Dior is teaming up with Cheval Blanc Paris to create its own take on the cruise spa, with capacity for five passengers in four suites for a two-hour journey down the Seine. It will run from June 29 to July 13.

The decoration of the boat includes rattan furniture and parasols in blue toile de jouy, a Dior motif reinterpreted by the current designer Maria Grazia Chiuri,

BLUE MARBLE IS BROKEN

Streetwear and couture clashed in a melting pot of a show by designer Anthony Alvarez, who counts Justin Bieber among his clients.

Alvarez is one to watch – with her fashion repertoire for the MTV generation mixing travel, streetwear and popping colors.

For Spring-Summer, he brings up the psychedelia for a flashy and ample collection. Multicolored loose trousers, with BLUEMARBLE printed across, met an acid yellow-green oversized coat with a marbled texture. An ’80s pajama pants look was behind one of the collection’s best looks, in pearly white. It came among baggy jeans with rhinestone four-leaf clovers.

But this show also tapped into the creator’s rich heritage. Alvarez was born in New York with a mix of Filipino, Spanish, French and Italian roots. The collection celebrated this vision of the globetrotter. Ethnic shirts mixed with silk varsity bomber jackets and knotted leopard scarves that looked ready for both a safari and a rock concert.

The brand name itself is global – borrowed from the iconic photo of Earth taken in 1972 by the crew of Apollo 17.

STUDIES TAKES THE TRAIN

Design triumvirate Jose Lamali, Jeremie Egry and Aurelien Arbet at Etudes used an abandoned train track on the outskirts of Paris as the setting – and creative springboard – for an urban-themed exhibition.

It was the first in an upcoming series of site-specific exhibitions, which use a location or environment to draw design inspiration. Paris was a logical starting point for this French brand – although here the “lesser known Paris” was what the house said it was channeling. Guests watched from the platform over the Petite Ceinture, or Little Belt, railway – a thirty-kilometre track circling the city.

Frayed white jeans, distressed denim, hiking sneakers, industrial-looking baseball caps, overalls and workman’s aprons mixed with flip-flops and utilitarian suspenders. They seemed to evoke disenfranchised 90s youth who might have wandered the disused train tracks.

These urban references riffed nicely on the tailoring. Loose-fitting jackets, with a boxy ’80s silhouette, came over matching pants that were funky cropped below the knee, leading into military-style boots.

BIANCA SAUNDERS PRESENTS A SECOND SHOW IN PARIS

One of the few female menswear designers, Andam Award-winning British designer Bianca Saunders was in confident mood on Wednesday in a deft second show that channeled her native London.

Saunders, who has Caribbean roots, quickly shot to fame after graduating from Central Saint Martin a few years ago. Minimalism was at the heart of this exhibition.

Eccentric oversized details such as collars and pockets have creatively spun into art form, sometimes on looks that border on space age. A silver glam rock suit with sanitized elasticated pumps evoked the pandemic.

Elsewhere, medieval peasant-style woolen undergarments, which resembled Vivienne Westwood, were typical of her seemingly effortless fashionable touch.

.

Leave a Comment