¡J’aime Paris! One of the most charming cities in the world. And it is even more so when we get to see designers’ Fall 22 collections during Paris Fashion Week. May the third day begin!
Paris Fashion Week is one of the most important weeks in the industry. For 7 days, fashion lovers, critics, and connoisseurs meet in the French capital to see the designers’ new collections. What began in the 20s and 30s as a petit committee where only the most prominent clients of the designers attended has completely changed. Now Paris Fashion Week is a large-scale event full of drama and showmanship. The clothing are still the main characters on the stage, but now, locations and the shows must have that wow factor to get the world’s attention.
Over the years, we have seen great collections and runway shows. Just recall the genius of Louis Vuitton’s shows during the Marc Jacobs era or Chanel’s fall 2017 show, in which Karl Lagerfeld built a spaceship inside the Grand Palais. Yes, Paris Fashion Week is an extraordinary world of luxury. And for the Fall 22 season, designers continue to honor the legacy of these great fashion houses. The third day of this edition of Paris Fashion Week was full of great moments, but there were two collections that really stood out.
This brand, founded in 1961 by André Courrèges, has since been the talk of the town thanks to its avant-garde designs. In the sixties and seventies, the brand revolutionized the industry thanks to miniskirts, pantacourts and high-waisted jacket–garments that created a new, bolder and more daring sense of femininity. Aimed at the new generations, where young people sought to express themselves through clothing and free themselves from the rules of society. This was Courrèges, one of the brands that helped position prêt-à-porter as a response to Haute Couture; freer, more casual, but at the same time elegant and sublime.
Courrèges is one of the biggest names in the industry. With a futuristic aesthetic, mainly due to the use of synthetic materials like vinyl or PVC, this French maison has been positioning itself as a favorite since its relaunch in 2016. Now under the direction of Belgian designer Nicolas Di Felice, Courrèges is entering a new stage in which the revolutionary spirit of its founder is coming to life through each of the brand’s garments. For the Fall 22 collection, he presents us with a variety of pieces that have that futuristic vibe, clothing with a metallic finish, asymmetrical silhouettes, and a space look that nods to the archetypal “Future Man” of the 80s and 90s. But these outfits are far from being costumes or falling into a cliché, each of the mini dresses or outfits that came down the runway are creations that look current and at the same time modern. It is a collection that fuses the aesthetics of the past, with those current fashion and a real vision of the future.
The Fall ‘22 collection was presented in a cube with white lighting, which gave the feeling of being on a set of the movie 2001: A Space Odyssey (1968). With a color palette that was very indicative of the brand’s DNA (black and white alongside burgundy, red, orange, and yellow with some metallic accents in silver), it was as if Courrèges recreated a sunrise as seen from space. This collection was a new dawn that told us about a future about to begin.
The brand’s flagship garments, like burgundy leather miniskirts, black vinyl crop jackets or black leather mini dresses, came together with new designs like PVC wide-leg pants, white A-line coats, and bodysuits with cut-outs. Together, these pieces of clothing created a apce aesthetic that reminded us of sci-fi movies like Barbarella (1968), The Fifth Element (1997), or The Matrix (1999). Courrèges continues to demonstrate that its eyes are set on the, with avant-garde designs that ironically have both a retro and futuristic aesthetic. The looks seemed to come from a not-so-distant future but at the same time can be worn on the street today.
Dries van Noten
This Belgian designer is one of the most influential creatives in recent decades in the world of fashion. For Dries van Noten, fashion is an art from and, like any other types of art, requires time, dedication, and hard work to creation. Given this fact, it is no surprise that the designer’s collections to be full of maximalist prints. Dries is a creator who, more than designing clothing, seeks to preserve the beautiful tradition and art of clothing and handmade textiles, in which each object is created with the highest levels of perfection possible.
To present the Fall 22 collection, the designer opted for a film and a presentation that was a a kind of art exhibition. In an old house in Paris, which reminded the designer of his own home thanks to the tapestries, lighting and colors. The attendees were invited to wander through the rooms and corridors discovering the collection at every turn: dresses, two-piece suits and coats, and accessories like bags, shoes, and jewelry. The house held treasures and secrets inside. To accompany this immersive experience, the designer created a behind-the-scenes fashion film on the creation of the collection’s lookbook. During this mini clip, Dries van Noten showed us his inspiration, his creative process, and what he wants to express, and we saw how the collection took shape. The Belgian creative director told us that he was inspired by the melancholy song “Luna Diamante” by the Italian singer Mina. I think that this collection embodies this feeling–of something beautiful born in a moment of sadness.
In this collection, the garments look like works of art, and the prints resemble paintings from museums around the world. For example, there was a golden coat that resembled the paintings of the Austrian painter Gustav Klimt, over a blouse with a turtleneck in leopard print and high-heeled black patent leather boots. That look was just stunning, a little piece of opulence. And it is that same sentiment that we saw throughout the entire collection, a wide variety of contrasting prints – floral, abstract, animal – overlapping to create outfits that should not work well together but end up becoming beautiful. It was a baroque aesthetic in which excess was the key. These elements transformed the clothes into almost artistic works that came to life on the models’ bodies.
Zebra print dresses and red leather turtleneck tops with two-tone cow print boots–outfits are that stand out among the minimalism that we are seeing in the world of fashion. The Belgian designer is inviting us to return to the grandeur of the past, when dressing was an art. Dries van Noten has created a collection full of opulence in which clothes become artifacts that invite us to dream of a world of luxury and riches. Dries created a fantasy world with the Fall 22 collection that he presented today at Paris Fashion Week–a world we all dream of.