Best Looks from AW19 Couture…


The library lounge venue at Chanel and models walking to Portishead’s forever intriguing ‘Glory Box’…

While in overall the autumn-winter 2019 haute couture had more mehs (Daniel Roseberry’s overcharged debut at Schiaparelli, the chaos at Maria Grazia Chiuri’s Dior…) than yeahs, I still managed to find a few looks that really, really won it. And, of course Pierpaolo Piccioli’s Valentino utterly stole my heart, but on that in a separate post. So, here are the three most gorgeous outfits I took notice of this season (again, except for Valentinoooo!).

This Viktor & Rolf look is like a Marc Chagall painting, in all of its aspects: from the paint-like texture of the felt material to the witchy, oneiric aura surrounding it. I call this art-and-coven couture.

Virginie Viard‘s debut couture collection at Chanel first felt like a snooze to me. But then I grasped its point: the beauty in regal. It’s just so rare in today’s fashion. The look worn by Sara Grace Wallerstedt – a pleated, high-collar, sleeveless shirt and a mustard skirt – is pure elegance.

With Clare Waight Keller, one season is a miss, another is a success. The autumn-winter 2019 couture outing was her best one yet. She has let some drama to Givenchy. The velvet, black dress with a lowered crinoline is so refined and sharp. So chic, yet in a way… disturbing? That’s the spirit of noblesse radicale.

All collages by Edward Kanarecki.

Always On The Go. Givenchy Resort 2020

For Givenchy‘s resort 2020, Clare Waight Keller digged into the idea of a wardrobe that’s suited for travelling – from daily commuting to long distance voyages. Or, for people like Clare, who travel from London to Paris on a weekly basis, occasionally do shows in Florence (Pitti Uomo is approaching and Givenchy is this year’s guests), dress celebrities for the Met Gala in New York and check on the brand’s ambassadors in Cannes. That’s a busy schedule, and the wardrobe should be ready for anything. “What I’ve seen so much around me, and with my colleagues and friends, are the challenges of dress today when people travel so much,” she says, then laughs, pointing to one of her Resort images of a girl who has a lanyard phone pouch around her neck and a tote in one hand. “The two-bag situation. That is exactly how my life is!” For women, Waight Keller did faux-fur coats in pink and leopard print, as well as masculine coats with military buttons and sharp shape, a beige jumpsuit perfect for entire week and some really, really gorgeous eveningwear which included intriguing lace work. I somehow missed consistency in all that, but still, it’s a wardrobe of staples, ready for very different occasions. Menswear was stronger in this collection, maybe due to the model casting (that blond hair makes anything look good), maybe because of the Givenchy motorcycle helmet which stole the spotlight. Or, it was all because of this fluidity between sportiness and tailoring. A motocross sweatshirt over a shirt and tie, a green 70s suit styled with sneakers, major outerwear put together with over-sized denim pants. There’s something very Riccardo-Tisci-era Givenchy about it, but done without overhyped prints.

Collage by Edward Kanarecki.

Men’s – Quite Clean, Really. Givenchy AW19

Clare Waight Keller nails it lately at Givenchy. Her men’s autumn-winter 2019, presented for the first time separately from women’s, proves that she feels more and more confident in creating a guy’s wardrobe. “I went into my own self, really, back into the ’90s, and how I felt when I was really young, how we’d dress on not a lot of money. At Givenchy we have young Parisians from schools here, and there’s this same perverse poshness, wearing tailoring in a really sharp way, with a shirt or T-shirt,” she said during the intimate presentation that took place in Paris today. “Quite clean, really.” Polished, slim-fit trousers and leather jackets dangerously looked like Hedi Slimane’s Celine, but the other part of the collection – the more elegant – is where you can completely loose your mind for. This tailoring. See the flared trousers, that came in deep red, cerulean blue and dark purple. Waight Keller attributed them to the “softness and fluidity I like for men”. Some looks had a sensually highlighted waist, something that’s having a graceful return to menswear. There was lots of elevated sportwear, but nothing will beat this one, simple look made up of a white shirt, just partially tucked into the waisted suitspants. Less is more is a cliché, I know, but in case of Waight Keller’s Givenchy, it’s just right.

Collage by Edward Kanarecki.

Pertinent. Givenchy Pre-Fall 2019

Clare Waight Keller continues to thrive at helm of Givenchy, and the pre-fall 2019 collection of hers proves that very, very well. For the collection, Clare chose the myth of Icarus as her message and included various allusions to deities, minotaurs, the sky, and the sea. “Mythology always seems to capture people’s imagination. There’s a dreamlike element, but it’s also grounded in something pertinent,” she explained. However, the designer didn’t go too literal with it.  The ostrich-feathered tunic and the wing-like protrusions of a yellow minidress might have nodded to the mythological fallen hero. But then, you can equally treat them as some very, very chic eveningwear. The line-up, featuring Waight Keller’s favourite model, Veronka Kunz, and other Givenchy muses, was all about simple cuts that brought a sharp, distinct look. The exaggerated, short blazers or voluminous faux fur coats are my highlights.

Collages by Edward Kanarecki.