Looking through the pictures of an Hermes runway show can be almost anticlimactic – we know that Jean Paul Gaultier is going to do something brilliant and that Hermes only uses the absolute best in luxury materials and finishes. They’ve set such a high bar for themselves that even though the team behind the brand almost always turns out brilliant work, I find that the attitude tends to be, “Of course it’s good.
General Fashion(Page 5)
I don’t always love what Chanel shows, but I almost always adore the great length to which Karl Lagerfeld goes to show it. Few people in fashion are capable of envisioning a great spectacle in the way that he does for his over-the-top presentations, and they’re consistently a pleasure to watch, whether or not you enjoy the clothes.
Chanel’s presentation at Paris Fashion Week involved the importation of giant chunks of an iceberg from from Scandinavia, and the models splashed down the runway in appropriate cold-weather attire.
In a show with such an astounding number of beautiful handbags, I barely know where to begin. Who would have thought after last season’s tribal tassel disaster that Marc Jacobs would come up with such a feminine, pretty, and functional collection of handbags at Louis Vuitton. I would have been the last one to guess it – in fact, I remarked to a friend last week that I was barely even looking forward to the Vuitton show.
If there is a more haunting experience in fashion than watching Alexander McQueen‘s posthumous Fall/Winter 2010 presentation to a very small group of fashion’s glitterati, I can’t imagine what it would be. Presented in an ornate salon owned by the brand’s parent company, the partial collection of 16 looks was brilliant, as we all knew it would be. It was also, in part, something totally unexpected: angelic.
In a season where nearly every designer has put out clothes that are classic and subdued, it’s almost a relief to know that Christophe Decarnin is still making clothes for rock stars and supermodels at Balmain. I mean, someone has to, right?
Decarnin’s collection would look aggressively glam in almost any context, but the effect is only magnified a thousandfold when juxtaposed with the somber browns and midcentury shapes of many of the season’s other high-profile collection.
By all accounts, the Dolce & Gabbana Fall/Winter 2010 runway show was very moving – it began with a video dedicated to the technical skill that goes in to creating the brand’s clothing and ended with an enormous herd of models taking the runway in all manner of black blazers. I can’t think of more fitting bookends to a fashion show in these uncertain times – celebrating craftsmanship and classics seems to be just the note to hit right now.
The more I see of the Fall/Winter 2010 shows, particularly the ones from Milan, the more I become certain that the fashion industry glitterati have clandestine meetings after the season has been presented to decide what the trends for the next season will be, just so everyone else is on the same page. That, or it’s secretly just one supergenius (or supercomputer?) behind every major collection, and that’s why everything from Gucci to Fendi to Ferragamo this season has been so cohesive – not just within each collection, but across much of what has been shown at Fashion Week as a whole.
If the brands that I normally make fun of continue to turn out impressive bag collections, what am I going to crack jokes about? With the second lovely presentation by Fendi in as many seasons, it looks like before I know it, the only time I’m going to get to be nasty and snarky is when Versace puts forth a new abomination against handbag design.
Let’s not mince words about the handbags that went down the Bottega Veneta runway last week in Milan: I cannot recall ever seeing a runway collection that included so many different kinds of bags, all of them utterly beautiful. I’m not even that enormous of a Bottega fan and I was still awed by the details that went into all of them, from oversized crocodile hobos to the tiniest embellished knot clutches.
Allow me to make one of my personal biases clear: I look forward to seeing the bags on the Gucci runway more than almost any other bag-including show at fashion week. The brand’s notorious sense for modern glamor and sexuality often comes through best in their runway bags, and seeing them is almost always a pleasure.
I wasn’t as excited by this season’s offerings as I was for last season’s technology-influenced collection, but they were still as luxurious and detailed as you could reasonably ask.