We’re still on a fashion high from the fall runway shows — yes, it’s hardly begun to be spring, but we’re already chomping at the bit for newer and better. That’s why we’re bringing one of fall’s hottest trends to you right now: Embellished and bejeweled pieces showed up on the runways at Armani Privé,Fausto Puglisi, and Givenchy for fall, but each of these gems is available right now, so get ready to shine bright like a diamond.
For today’s idyllic adventure into the foggy woodlands, Moncler drew inspiration from some of the most iconic (and male-dominated) of English institutions. The Queen’s guard made an appearance in their double-breasted red finery and fur hats. There were fox hunters too, but their tailored pieces were elongated into sharp coat dresses. Equestrian elements like jodhspurs and riding helmets turned up throughout the show. Moncler gave these elements a twist by embellishing jackets and hats with fur and bits of sparkle.
From the moment Freja Beha Erichsen walked out in a plush sheepskin coat and patent leather ankle boots, carrying a shrunken-down silver luggage trunk as purse, it was clear that Nicolas Ghesquière intends to keep Louis Vuitton cool and current, regardless of the brand’s plans for world domination. It’s a tricky balance given the weighty status of a brand like LV–only further exemplified by the show’s monumental venue, the palatial Fondation Louis Vuitton. Still, Ghesquière pulled it off: blending mod ’60s elements like low-heeled slingback mules and structured slip dresses, with casual pieces like drawstring pants and logo tees for a mix that showed that even the LVMH umbrella won’t make things too serious.
Tonight at Alexander McQueen a Victorian gothic spinster awoke from a century and a half of peaceful slumber. Creative Director Sarah Burton took Miss Havisham–that wealthy old woman living amidst the decay of former grandeur–as her muse. Disintegrating opulence informed the faded lace collars and rumpled rose skirts in parchment-fine ruffles. Signs of life stirred here too: black leather, bright red, and bits of black and blush lingerie kept the sentimentalism in check and the collection firmly in the twenty-first century.
Iris van Herpen, the Dutch designer responsible for some of Lady Gaga and Björk’s most memorable looks, is known for her dramatic, sculptural designs. This season, her architectural vision subtracted the substance and left the scaffolding behind. One construction consisted of precisely-pleated circles hovering around the body, while another was warped from lattice-like networks of metal flowers to form the merest suggestion of a dress. But the designer’s ability to toy with negative space reached its zenith in those gravity-defying, skeletal metal shoes: translucent crystal spikes jutted defiantly from the soles with nary a heel to stand on.
Valentino’s design duo Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli know what their customer wants. For fall/winter 2015 they piled on classic Valentino beading and embellishments, lavishing empire-waist dresses with richly embroidered arabesques and floral forms. Yet, in spite of the careful attention to detail, the finely-wrought clothes still managed to feel surprisingly boho chic. All those sheer panels and strips of lace lent a youthful weightlessness to the floor-skimming dresses so things didn’t get too heavy. Of course, all the floaty fabrics in the world couldn’t prepare the audience for the most light-hearted element of all…the surprise appearance, and a major teaser: Zoolander and Hansel on the runway.
With the Parisian twilight as its backdrop, Hedi Slimane’s Fall/Winter show for Saint Laurent ushered in a full-force biker-chic extravaganza staged on a set of rock concert proportions. This was statement-making fashion ripped straight out of clubs, music videos, and movies of the 1980s (think: Madonna, circa “Desperately Seeking Susan”). Styled with chains, tattered fishnets, and extreme eyeliner, the references were not subtle. “Pretty In Pink” taffetta dresses and bold patchwork furs came down the runway alongside Saint Laurent’s borrowed-from-the-boys classic: Le Smoking went retro-punk for the occasion, thanks to the sly introduction of the Bowie-esque tie.
Before a set comprised of 50,000 books, Sonia Rykiel’s creative director Julie de Libran sent out a collection brimming with that covetable unstudied, French girl chic, or, je ne sais quoi. That Parisian insouciance came in the form of sequined dresses layered over sweaters or double-breasted coats paired with short skirts. Nonchalent nods to vintage Rykiel turned up in the striped knit wear peeking out from beneath those lavish extra-plush coats that have recently become Rykiel staples. One such coat, tiered in hues of black and beige and worn by fashion week darling Gigi Hadid, made for the instagram statement of the evening.
The debut of a new creative director is always a much anticipated affair. Today’s, from Nadège Vanhee-Cybulski, formerly of The Row and Céline, had Hermès fans breathing a sigh of relief: the house’s reputation for refined elegance is still in good hands. Vanhee-Cybulski sent out a decidedly covered-up collection of long sleeves, high necks, and long skirts. Still, there was a move to reinvigorate old classics with pops of yellow, red, and blue. And even the classic Hermès equestrian blanket got reimagined as a luxe cashmere poncho coat, complete with the modern touch of a sporty racer stripe.