The Look – Dries Van Noten SS20

The remarkable Dries Van Noten & Christian Lacroix collection for spring-summer 2020 is still on my mind. It was a true fashion fairy-tale that you never thought would happen (or even expect to happen!). One of the most spectacular looks? The fuchsia parachute dress worn non-chalantly over a polka-dots shirt and brocade shorts. Here, it’s remixed with John Baldessari’s take on Alberto Giacometti, Marlene Dietrich photographed by Irving Penn and Isabelle Huppert as Orlando at the Théâtre Vidy-Lausanne in 1993.

Collage by Edward Kanarecki.

Dover Street Parfums Market

25 years after the launch of the first Comme des Garçons perfume, 15 years after opening the first Dover Street Market in London, Comme des Garçons opens Dover Street Parfums Market in Paris. It’s a place you never knew you needed so much. Located two minutes from Musée Picasso, this outpost of DSM is dedicated to beauty with a selection of perfumes, cosmetic and make-up brands from around the world. From avant-garde independent young labels (Kerosene, 19-69, Ormaie…) to the most established and classic references, it’s an explosion of scents, sounds and textures. Skincare, body and hair care products are also part of the proposal, with a majority of sustainable and organic brands aimed for all the human spectrum. It’s about authencity, diversity, originality and inclusivity. Special guests include Gucci with its Alchemist’s Garden line; Byredo’s unique corner; events by MAC cosmetics (and their Instagram-big Comme Des Garçons tattoo kit available only here); Julien D’Ys’ hair installations; and Thom Browne who is about to launch his very first perfume range entitled 09.27.65. Dover Street Parfums Market has no commercial visuals, logos or gifts with purchases. As for the interior, Rei Kawakubo designed a forest of pillars with egg shaped shelves carved within them. Mainstream beauty stores and department stores are becoming even more bleak and charmless in my eyes now.

11 bis rue Elzevir / Paris

Belle Époque Today. Louis Vuitton SS20

And here is the last collection of Paris Fashion Week: Louis Vuitton. It’s been a season of joyful nostalgia and bold dressing, and Nicolas Ghesquière ticked both boxes with his line-up. For spring-summer 2020 Ghesquière took us to Belle Époque–era Paris after his last season‘s venture to the 1980s. “It’s a part of French history that’s very interesting in art, as well as culturally, in terms of emancipation of women, and, of course, in literature with Proust,” he explained. It’s also a period that more or less coincided with the birth and rise of the house of Louis Vuitton. In the late 1800s, advances in construction and technology ushered in a new era of travel for the elite, to whom Monsieur Vuitton sold his  monogram trunks. There were many Belle Époque references in this collection: the pouf sleeves of shirts; the iris boutonnières, each one different; the Gibson Girl hairdos, and all the Art Nouveau touches, from the psychedelic swirls of a green jacquard coat to the painterly flowers on dresses to a little leather jacket hand-painted with angelic faces. In a way I miss the times when Nicolas did future-wear: we’ve got Gucci, Paco Rabanne and a bunch of other labels that dig in the past for references. Still, the huge screen that featured super-futurist Scottish musician SOPHIE performing an extended version of “It’s Okay to Cry”  while the models walked the runway somehow matched with the clothes’ historical background. And this sort of time-spanning eclecticism is very Ghesquière.

Collage by Edward Kanarecki.

Getting Better. Lacoste SS20

Louise Trotter‘s second collection at Lacoste proves that she knows how to direct the label. The brand is more than a tennis brand, yet its origin lies in tennis, so it was right to present the line-up at the Court Simonne-Mathieu in Paris’s Roland-Garros tennis complex. Trotter upped her focus this season by presenting a collection of clothes which, beyond the crocs stitched onto that trench or onto the sleeve of a yellow suit or printed on the silk pants, conveyed both the spirit of Lacoste and its athletic luxury convincingly. The oversized short-sleeve shirts in graphic color block were a take on the famous preppy pique shirt Lacoste sells. Obviously, Trotter’s version is much more appealing than the original Lacoste design you see at hotel resorts. We known Louise’s aesthetic from her time at Joseph, so seeing lots of minimal leather was no surprise: slouchy rib-hemmed pants and a leather neckerchief styling were great. The leather-collared polo shirtdress is another highlight. Another takeaway from the collection is green poplin dress and a white pleated skirt look. With the help of Suzanne Koller’s styling, Trotter’s Lacoste is heading for a win.

Collage by Edward Kanarecki.