PARIS FASHION WEEK AUTUMN WINTER 2022: A Roundup Report
From BALMAIN’s Thought-Provoking Body Armour and YVES ST LAURENT’s Nostalgic Sweeping 1930s Silhouettes to LOUIS VUITTON’s Poignant Tribute to Youth, Designers had One Common Message this Fall: Contemplation and Peace.
All Image Credit Paris Fashion Week and Participating Designers
Paris Fashion Week is one of the shiniest jewels in the crown of the world fashion calendar and this season the fashion offerings, as ever, were second to none. The most romantic city in the world and all its extraordinary facets shone brightly as a glorious backdrop to the shows: the river Seine, the Pompidou Centre, the city of Paris and its iconic Eiffel Tower were never too far out of sight, with its chic fashion-adoring public playing host to yet another fabulous week of beautiful clothes and exciting new offerings from the stables of the stalwarts of European fashion.
Paris Fashion Week Autumn Winter 2022 took place in a city all too conscious of world events enfolding on their doorstep and although collections had been designed and prepared months before the event, designers were acutely aware of the role fashion can play in times of crisis and adapted their offerings and presentations (music, for example), often as a last-minute addition, to show solidarity and promote a message of peace.
We’ve picked a few of the collections we loved and invite you to join us for a closer look.
Grace Jones’ “This is my voice, my weapon of choice” has seldom felt more appropriate as a backdrop to a runway show to mirror what’s happening on the world’s stage. As Olivier Rousteing’s models in their body armour and protective clothing – padded to the point of what seemed like bullet proof vests – strutted their stuff, Rousteing posted a message of solidarity with the plight of the Ukranian people on his social media shortly before the show, stating clearly that the collection wasn’t designed “as a direct response to the recent horrific invasion of our neighbours” – however, this collection couldn’t have been more prophetic.
From the segmented, padded armour, ‘bullet belts’ and tactical gear to the almost post-apocalyptic tie-dyed ensembles with their heavyweight boots– genius in their design, in the context of current world events, this offering couldn’t possibly have been more eerily appropriate and thought-provoking.
Watch Balmain’s show here:
Yves St Laurent
Creative director Anthony Vaccarello’s dresses for Autumn Winter 2022 were subtle and sleek, neutral in colour, simplistically beautiful, some slashed in places to reveal skin. They were strikingly reminiscent of that wonderful period in the 1930’s when Madeleine Vionnet created her bias cut, elongated, floor-sweeping gowns (and at least one of the pieces looked like it could’ve come straight off Madelein Vionnet’s cutting table with its bias cut, central plaque, gathers and its long flaired skirt!) While watching this, the most poignantly elegant of shows, one couldn’t help but cast your thoughts back to a time in history, sandwiched between turbulent world events, when extraordinary elegance of this calibre prevailed.
Some dresses were asymmetrically cut in sleek jersey, all characterized by flattering and cleverly-positioned gathers, others were constructed from lace. Sumptuous fur-trimmed jackets and coats added to the elegant and sophisticated silhouette. Vaccarello’s subtle nod to the St Laurent aesthetic and legacy wowed, and most befittingly St Laurent’s beloved Eiffel Tower was never out of the picture as models were elegantly striding up and down.
Watch Yves St Laurent’s show here:
Nicolas Ghesquière presented his Fall Winter 2022 Women’s Collection in the architectural vaulted space of the Musée d’Orsay in Paris – the first time a show has ever taken place here – with models navigating their way up and down the stairs, past the sculptures in that iconic space with its enormous see-through clock that overlooks the city and the Seine.
The show celebrated adolescence, “an excursion into a perceptible, fleeting, and decisive moment when everything comes to the fore, in all its innocence and insight. The impermanence and beautiful volatility of adolescence”, according to creative director Ghesquière. And as such it was gritty, it was grungy and almost anti-fashion, it was eclectic (a similar vibe to the way Gucci wowed us in Milan a week ago), it was random, above all, it was so of our time!
The oversized blazers over sportswear, heavy fringed scarves that formed part of jackets, chunky stripy rugby jerseys, heavy ribbed sweaters nonchalantly tied around flimsy full-skirted chiffon dresses, oversized 1979s-style jackets, screen-printed T-shirts, tweed pinafores and neckties … all were painting a nostalgic picture reminiscent of an era that’s hard to pin down to a decade, but nevertheless one that we can all relate to and recall with a sense of carefree melancholia, one that we’d love to be part of again.
Watch Louis Vuitton’s show here: