It’s Paris, and it feels like a breath of fresh air coming along Jacquemus‘ autumn-winter 2016. The city of French fashion is undergoing a wave of youthful talent – and Simon Porte Jacquemus represents that perfectly with his extraordinary, yet wearable garments. “I would like there to be less industry and more poetry” is what he declared backstage, minutes before the show. It was all about a surrealist illusion this season – the dresses floated in the air and spaghetti straps were magically elevated above the shoulders. The exaggerated shoulders, although distinctly reminded the old, good Martin Margiela, introduced us to other arty shapes and geometric cuts – sometimes, they looked even too grotesque, as in case of the “mini-skirt” worn with a pastel-blue turtleneck. But what was the most genuine from the entire collection was the expanded accessory line – block-heeled “rond carré” shoes, asymmetrical gloves in tangerine orange and cute, kidney-shaped bags are the highlights.
Jacquemus frequently mentions his typically French child-hood as a continous inspiration for his collections and spring-summer 2017 is not an exception. But his newest “story”, as he tends to call it, is much more refined. The designer searched deep in Provençal folk culture, and he conveyed the mood of a sun-drenched, care-free French village girl in a brilliant way.
Jacquemus loves the term ‘naive’. There’s always something childish about his collections – for SS17, it’s definitely the setting of his venue: a fake, orange sun glowed at the end of the runway, radiating with summer nostalgia. First element of the show that caught my eye was a range of lovely, straw hats, or chapeau de paille if you prefer French. The dresses with voluminous sleeves and over-sized pinstripe suits are on everybody’s lips for spring, but Simon managed to make them look eternally chic. In fact, the collection isn’t about a new idea or silhouette. Borrowed-from-a-guy shirt, block-heeled shoes, geometrical culottes and sexy cuts are very Jacquemus. I guess that’s the appeal of this collection: it’s focused on weekend-perfect ready-to-wear with an arty twist.
Simon is the designer, who brings joy to the fashion industry – looking at his collections, you can forget about the world for at least a second.