PARIS (AP) — After Milan, global fashion’s spotlight shifted to the final stretch of ready-to-wear shows in Paris on Tuesday, as the industry looks to the future with all the final fall trends.
But displays in the French capital will also revisit the past this week, with homages to deceased designers Vivienne Westwood and Paco Rabanne.
Here are some highlights of Tuesday’s fall-winter 2023-2024 collections, including Dior:
A surreal world awaited Dior’s guests inside Paris’ Tuileries gardens.
An installation suggestive of a multicolored giant octopus spanned the length and breadth of the round runway, its fabric tentacles gleaming with thousands of tiny lights. It was the work of Portuguese artist Joana Vasconcelos, who wanted to explore how organic form interacted with the “feminine realm of artisanal savoir-faire.” It made for a dazzling backdrop especially given the flurry of paparazzi flashes snapping guests including actresses Charlize Theron and Maisie Williams, model Elle Macpherson and K-pop star Jisoo.
If the decor seemed futuristic, the clothes used the past as a touchstone, resulting in less exuberance but plenty of flair.
Three women — the house founder’s sister Catherine Dior, a French resistance hero, as well as French singers Edith Piaf and Juliette Greco, each described as “rebellious, at once strong and fragile” — were muses in this collection. It channeled the 1950s, Christian Dior’s heyday.
A vintage air was evoked in a faded black leather menswear coat, crumpled houndstooth skirt and wrinkled woolen socks. Elsewhere, sweaters and skirts sported extra volume in the shoulders or hips in a nod to the thicker fabrics of the post-war period. Stand out pieces included a black textured skirt hung heavily with thousands of embellished flowers that cut a fine androgynous figure below a white shirt and tie. While mottled fabric featured a gleaming metallic thread sewn into it, revealing the skills of Dior’s atelier.
MAME KUROGOUCHI, PAST AND FUTURE
The Japanese ready-to-wear brand of Mame Kurogouchi delves edgily between past and present, mixing traditional dressmaking with new technologies.
This was on full display at fall’s minimalist take on the 80s — as far as a decade that exuberant can be minimalist.
A gray pantsuit with crisp clean lines had a futuristic feel with a diagonal dynamic. A black scarf that gripped the neck like a hand tugged down the shoulder, complementing a black space age fanny pack that evoked a cummerbund.
A pared down color palette created a sanitized feel that worked nicely on the 80s references — broad, flat apron silhouettes, hoods and thickly textured top-heavy ensembles.
VAQUERA GETS ITS KINK ON
“Obscene dress” read one emblazoned T-shirt at Vaquera’s rather saucy collection. Although the look was among the least kinky in a show that otherwise served up inches of flesh, studded chokers, bare torsos, a shredded take on bondage gear and multiple takes on 90s grunge and denim jeans.
This was the sophomore showing in Paris for designers Patric DiCaprio and Bryn Taubensee, who came to prominence six years ago in New York with their iconic U.S. flag gown. After a more commercial season last year, the talented duo got back to their bold antics.
Black-heavy, the concise 12-look display began with a masked headpiece and a patch over one breast on a naked female torso. The other breast was covered by the model’s gloved hand. It would be a difficult look to wear on the street, but it got guests’ cameras snapping. Next, a black cotton top constructed of myriad shreds for volume – and edge. A skirt was deconstructed in flaps to evoke a bondage outfit, worn alongside a thermal hat in a woolen take on a bondage mask.