Louis Vuitton: Musée d’Orsay kids
Whatever else you say about Nicolas Ghesquière, he certainly gives you something very new every season. This Monday at Vuitton: strikingly fresh voluminous tailoring; back from Varanasi attitude and a great series of photo montage prints of ideal youth.
These turned out to be images David Sims had shot of young kids back in the '90s, at the beginning of the photographer’s career.
Blossoming youth who had just reached adulthood, who appeared in some dozen looks: the neckline of flower power dresses; or sewn on red satin over a matelassé white coat which was itself a print made up of photos of the same youth. Skinny kids danced over pixilated carpet print pullovers or glowered on sequined trenches.
Best of all, on a group of oversized, giant check rugby jerseys, the latest expression of Ghesquière’s central fashion obsession – marrying active sportswear with athletic haute couture. Half his looks worn with slimline floral jodhpurs on wallpaper-print dhotis.
A super fresh-looking cast. Somehow, whether with Marc Jacobs or now Ghesquière, Vuitton always manages to have the best casts in Paris.
“This collection is dedicated to youth, in hopes that it can keep the unresolved poetry of adolescence like a flawless garment – in all its vivid romanticism, inspiring idealism, hope for the future, for a better world, and its dreams of perfection,” explained the designer.
And, as often before Vuitton nabs the best locations, underlining the sheer power of France’s most profitable luxury marque. This season the show was inside the Musée d’Orsay. The museum of 19th-century art and its statue-crammed ground floor was the ideal setting for Ghesquière and his era-assemblage style. In another smart move, the house has also been able reserve L’Orangerie for future seasons.
The show began with somewhat over-the-top proportions – big baggy pants, leather aviator jackets, military shirts and a series of floral kipper ties. Yet they were all very nonchalant, and preeminently Parisian. A certain confusion later too about the peplum vests with enormous tentacles made in what can only be described as Chanel wool bouclé.
That said, the collection all together was a bold and memorable statement. Where the most important news was Nicolas’ take on volume, which he managed to make very much his own. Cocoon Wasp-estate-owner blazers paired with oversized waistcoats – all with major league lapels. And a quartet of lurex and wool knit dresses with deep side pockets worn oven polo necks were all must-haves.
Celebrating what Ghesquière termed: “The impermanence and beautiful volatility of adolescence.”
The house may have had to close all its stores in Russia, yet the mood was one of quiet self-confidence at the show, when Ghesquière took an extended bow.
Backed up by churning electronic soundtrack featuring Far Away by Julianne Wolf, which felt like a good title for this collection. For this was far and away the most unexpected collection in Paris, a giant brand where a designer keeps on experimenting. Indeed, is expected to do so.
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