Maison Margiela’s Transgressive Army goes on maneuvers
In Britain, where John Galliano hails from, they have an institution, the Army Reserve, formerly known as the Territorial Army, or TA. Galliano at Maison Margiela has formed a new corps – a Transgressive Army, which went on maneuvers on a Paris catwalk Wednesday.
Iconoclastic to the core, Galliano presented his spring 2020 collection for Maison Margiela – the house’s ready-to-wear collection – to the tune of Lili Marlene. His latest fashionable regiment, to be sure, is a co-ed and equal-opportunity army. Both the men and women wore the same slanted four-inch heels marching down the gunmetal runway inside the Grand Palais.
Margiela Wrens from WW1 hospitals appeared in beautifully cut capes with military medals, topped with jaunty berets; elongated ward coats and rather divine billowing nurses frocks – for a great imitation of a very naughty latter day Ava Gardner.
Add in some fantastic cabans in a tie-dye that looked as if a giant’s hand had created the pattern; and fantastic four-pocket officers safaris. Finished with Martin Margiela’s signature washed out white wash patina.
Up in the officer’s mess, the off-duty colonels appeared for dinner in precision cut pinstripe double-breasted blazers, worn with slashed up denim jodhpurs. While his lieutenants and their girlfriends returned from the front in perforated trench coats and a couple of fabulous mixed media semi-sheer wrap coats. Rock star red carpet looks at their best.
Ending with wit, as a lost sailor appeared in leather tugboat captain’s pea coat, white knickers and leather high-heel boots marching madly around the space to earn Galliano an enormous crescendo of applause.
As ever, Galliano respected the tradition of the house’s secretive founder, and took no bow. But, he should know, this was a truly accomplished, stylish and innovative collection by a designer who now seems totally in synch with this conceptual house’s DNA. Galliano’s creativity has not dimmed.
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