To think Paris Fashion Week would succumb to weakness amid a pandemic is quite the insult.
(From left to right: Chanel; Thom Browne; LOEWE)
Paris Fashion Week cackles at the man who says fashion is dead. Its sides hurt from the laughter brought on by such an absurd idea. While fabric stores may be closed, to think Paris Fashion Week would succumb to weakness amid a pandemic is quite the insult. Fashion houses like Loewe, Christopher John Rogers and Rick Owens leap at these opportunities to innovate and showcase their work, be it in-person or virtually, for Paris Fashion Week.
1. Rick Owens
Mesh asymmetric fabrics stick and stretch on the skin like chewing gum, while steel-toed boots in lipstick reds and matte blacks trek up their legs. Rick Owens’ collection of soft, translucent fabrics and pronounced shoulders would be fitting in a sci-fi movie.
The collection titled Phlegethon comes from one of the five rivers within the Greek Underworld, a river made of fiery blood that bubbled with burning souls. A “bare-bones” collection, Rick Owens said in a FaceTime after the show, created by a “skeleton crew.” Despite his lifeless, somber influences, Rick Owens’ collection featured every model wearing masks that trailed behind them like veils, projecting a message of safety and a promotion of health from a fashion standpoint. (No more complaining that your mask doesn’t match your outfit.)
The Loewe Show-on-the-Wall Collection was a scrapbooker’s dream. Each person received a do-it-yourself kit including 16 posters, art-printed wallpaper, glue, scissors, and a brush, allowing their creative minds to run wild across the page. In a world surrounded with dreariness and despair, Anderson utilized bold backdrops and playful postures to draw a sense of joy. Using balloon sleeves and exaggerated pant legs, he aimed to lift the slowed-down spirit of fashion and awaken the arts and crafts guru’s inside us all.
( LOEWE via Vogue )
Balenciaga Creative Director Demna Gvasalia looked to the future of fashion in his collection, envisioning what clothing would look like in 2030. The collection was crafted with the planet in mind, with more than 90% of sustainable or upcycled materials. As the founding father of oversized clothing, he added that ignoring the gender constructs that dictate clothing reduces the product you need to produce.
“The silhouette changes, but whoever wears it, it looks good,” he said to Vogue.
The faces framed with bug-eyed goggles, hooded, overwashed jackets, and unpainted toes peeking from bedroom slippers, reflected how we’ve normalized feeling and dressing comfortably. Only COVID-19 could forecast if WFH fashion would exist in 2030.
4. Thom Browne
With the cancellation of the Tokyo Olympics, Thom Browne transports viewers about 239,000 miles to the moon to experience the 2132 Olympics. Athletic tracksuits were replaced by ankle-length pleated skirts, gold reflective aviators and embroidered hats.
Pink tweed jackets and pastel blue vests embellished with diamonds, danced under the lights of the “Chanel” Hollywood sign. Barbie pink denim skirts were worn with matching Chanel bags. Ruffled dresses were adorned with charms, pearls and all other things a girl could ever ask for.
6. Christopher John Rogers
It was a jovial parade of color and a celebration of voluminous hair on the Christopher John Rogers stage. A designer infamous for dressing A-list celebrities — *cough* *cough* Gaga at the MTV awards —, Rogers redirected his seamless fusion of color to appeal to everyday people. Some may argue color-block bodysuits with bullseyes across your chest, is not the typical Amazon shopper.
Even so, his incorporation of collared suede shirts speckled in rhinestones strays from his specialty, the ballgown. While he resisted the temptation, he still played with the shapes and colors of the dress silhouette as seen in the ruffled dress splashed with green and yellow paint.
Many would assume that fashion has entered a lethargic state yearning for the return of normalcy. Much of 2020 has led designers to focus on the simple pleasures of arts and crafts or dressing up in three-piece suits and bedroom slippers. The fashion world is, in fact, flourishing, and we’ve learned face masks and social distancing have only fueled creative expression.
Kalia Richardson is an Editorial Assistant for Rowdy Magazine and a junior journalism major at the University of Florida. Kalia enjoys post-workout dance parties, checking on her virtual Sim family and daily phone calls with her mommy. It’s common to find her writing stories anywhere but a traditional desk and spending hours on end reading fashion news at 3 a.m. You can reach her firstname.lastname@example.org