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Thread: Paris Fashion Week Rambling – S/S19 Shows

  1. #1

    Default Paris Fashion Week Rambling – S/S19 Shows

    by Eugene Rabkin

    "The fashion calendar is getting weirder and weirder. Houses combine shows, or inexplicably move ready to wear to couture calendar, or show off-schedule, because do designers really care about the likes of the CFDA and FHCM when they have Instagram? At least that’s how it felt the first day of Paris, where Undercover showed its first ever menswear Paris collection, and where Raf Simons showed off-schedule, which obviously prevented no one from schlepping god knows where to see another standing-only presentation.

    Oh, Undercover, where Jun Takahashi has learned to push the buttons of those of us who value cult cultural artifacts. Or cult subcultural artifacts. These days we hear (and say) all the time that subcultures are dead. Not if Takahashi has anything to say about that. Inspired by the film The Warriors, in which a New York gang traverses the city clashing with its rivals, Takahashi presented a collection of fashion gangs, with names such as the Dead Hermits and the Bloody Geekers, each with its own characteristics, and of course, their own uniforms. Each gang marched out in unison, then broke up, stomped around the stage and left to give way to a new one. Which gang is the StyleZeitgeist audience? The Vlads, obviously, because it was all goth galore and a Bauhaus soundtrack. Dracula would be pleased and so was I.

    From Bella Lugosi’s Dead at Undercover to Bella Lugosi’s Dead at Raf Simons; it was the soundtrack of the day (Sebastien Meuneir also used the song at the last women’s Ann Demeulemeester show). Same song, same fascination with youth culture, but how fresh it felt at Undercover and how underwhelming at Simons. The satin coat overload he sent down the runway did no one any favors. I can think of very, very few designers who can make satin work (Haider Ackermann in his imaginary boudoir, for example). The few decent styling ideas that came after – short sweaters over long dress shirts – Simons already stamped in our minds. There were also print tees and very covetable print backpacks, but they were overshadowed by the satin. Simons has not touched my heart in a while, which is saddening. But it was not the first time I heard someone say that he seems to be stuck in perpetual midlife crisis, and that perhaps a radical departure is due. I wondered why that is, and I honestly think it’s the weakness of his designs, and perhaps in turn they are weak because his heart is not in it anymore. I cannot think of any other reason why Undercover can mine youth culture with phenomenal results and Simons cannot. But the two designers are friends and so after Raf’s show we were treated to a combined Undercover/Raf Simons afterparty, which ended the night on a happy note.

    From up to down and up again, the rollercoaster of shows was at its highest at Rick Owens, whose presentation was nothing short of a triumph of design and showmanship. Titled “Babel,” it was all about chaos and confusion, juxtaposed against the natural human desire for control and structure, represented here in Owens’s fascination with Russian Constructivism. In clothes this clash was manifested with mega-wide snap-away pants in silk gazar and slim washed denim that sheathed the models’ bodies. But the most stunning were the silk mega-parkas that were covered in what Owens called “brutalist sequins.” Both the silhouettes and the materials wrestled with each other, but the winner was Owens himself, who proved again that there is nothing more precious, and increasingly more rare, in fashion than an auteur."

    Full article on SZ-Mag

  2. #2

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    For me, this has gotta be one of the worst overall seasons in a long while. I feel like fashion has entered it's populist phase which is the death of any art. I'm all for breaking down the barriers for diversity/gender expression/beauty standards, but in Abloh and co. case it just seems like lip service to cover up a complete lack of ideas about clothes. All the big "shake ups" of the season are a total snooze fest. And all this "diversity", "inclusion", "let the kids in" talk rings so hollow when your boring ass designs are still gonna cost thousands of dollars.

    The only bright spot for me is Sacai which is absolutely stunning this season. Anyone know what happened to Haider btw?

  3. #3
    kitsch killer Faust's Avatar
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    I could not agree more, Casey.

    Haider decided to combine his men's shows with women's. Something tells me not all is well in Haider land.
    Fashion is a form of ugliness so intolerable that we have to alter it every six months - Oscar Wilde

    StyleZeitgeist Magazine

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