Fashion Week

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Pre-fall used to be a wedged-in mini season used by big brands to fill store shelves in between summer sales and full-scale fall arrivals, but in a high-end market with a near-insatiable thirst for newness and product churn, almost every brand presents a full lineup of ready-to-wear, shoes and accessories for the formerly low-key season.

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Paris Couture Week Spring 2016 wrapped up late last week, and although couture tends toward the fantastical, the season’s shoes tended toward minimalism. Compared to previous offerings like Dior’s Spring 2014 Couture Pool Shoes, the season’s footwear is especially wearable, even if the vast majority of us will never be able to wear them.

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I like to joke that it’s always Fashion Week somewhere, but lately, that seems to be factually correct. We’ve had Pre-Fall 2016 shows happening regularly for months, and then the men’s shows happened in London, Paris and Milan for a seemingly interminable amount of time, and then, last week, it was Paris Couture Week.

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Another show season is in the books, and that means it’s time for a post-mortem on the fourth and final slate of shows, Paris Fashion Week. As you saw in our closer looks at the collections from Chanel, Dior and Louis Vuitton, there was much to celebrate on the French runways.

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Cultural appropriation in fashion is a super hot topic in the industry at the moment. Partly because the Internet has opened fashion criticism up beyond just the elite, brands are getting called out for their “borrowing” in situations when they wouldn’t have been criticized in the past, and not all of them have figured out solid ways to navigate it.

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Paris Fashion Week is, in some ways, the Super Bowl of fashion. Its attendees have played hard all season to get there, and when they’ve arrived, they have to play harder still to come out on top.

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Louis Vuitton is, by necessity, a show full of handbags every season. Creative director Nicolas Ghesquiere does far more that’s just as worthy of note, of course, but LV is, first and foremost, a brand concerned with its leather goods.

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When I heard that Chanel‘s Spring 2016 show was set to be airport-themed, I couldn’t help but smile; it was one of those (somewhat frequent) moments where I feel like Karl Lagerfeld personally cares about my happiness.

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Unless you’re brand new to Céline, you’re well aware that the brand tends to show far more unusual and conceptual bags on its runways than the majority of what actually ends up getting stocked in stores.

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Let’s get this out of the way up top: the bag that made the biggest debut on the Dior Spring 2016 runway is going to remind you of the Saint Laurent Sac de Jour in certain ways, which, in turn, already reminds many of you (and me) of the Hermès Birkin.

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