Koché’s fashionable resistance in a Paris park
Good to see Christelle Kocher back to doing what she does best – blending athletic sportswear with French street couture.
Another of her great strengths, creating beguiling indie fashion shows on a small budget. Like she did at Paris Fashion Week on Tuesday evening, setting the scene inside the charming Buttes-Chaumont, a fantastic park in northeastern Paris, built with steep cliffs and charming follies.
Her cast was accompanied by a quartet of bagpipes in full belt, adding a grandeur to this collection, which felt like a celebration of life after the darkness of lockdown. The atmosphere was optimistic throughout even if a steady drizzle meant many of the audience of 500 needed umbrellas.
"Why am I doing a fashion show? Well… It’s a matter of resistance. It’s a matter of emotion. It’s about being alive, living in living bodies," argued Kocher in her green-hued program notes.
Nor did the rain detract from the energy of this collection, which opened with slip dresses made in football team stripes, denim negligee dresses, athletic bras and boxer shorts trimmed with lace and marvelous hoodie-cocktails done in paisley jacquard.
In a coed Spring/Summer 2021 show, guys appeared in acid-dyed denim bowling shorts with matching shorts and sandals, floral-print jean jackets and Vietnam vet silk tops over track pants.
With uber models unable to fly in from New York – their main home – to Paris, there’s been a refreshing look to the casts this season. Nowhere more so than at Koché, with an excellent band of dashing young multi-ethnic Parisians, with all the cool hauteur, and innate style that implies.
"An intimate show, close to nature, close to people, close to where I live and close to the dreams I had since I created Koché," added the designer.
With the Celtic quartet and drummer playing "Hallelujah" by Leonard Cohen, the cast marched with banners reading things like: "Love Mother Nature Until She Comes" or "Parks Are Culture, Better Parks Better Culture." And after the models posed on the banks of a curving pond, Christelle took an extended tour of the park’s main path to loud and warm applause, as the sound of bagpipes echoed throughout the 19th arrondissement.
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