‘Down-to-Earth, Everyday and Ultra-Wearable’ was the New Mantra at Paris Fashion Week – and the Humble Jacket Reigned Supreme.


Homage to equestrian chic – a dappled faux horse fur coat. At Stella McCartney


Image Credit Paris Fashion Week and Vogue


The fashion temperature at the minute is haute! But not in a Never-Neverland, fantasy pie-in-the-sky kind of way … in truth fashion has seldom been this easy to wear, this practical, and this ‘everyday’. The fashion mood favours the practical jacket as its garment of the moment and jackets came in umpteen guises – from broad-shouldered and boxy to cropped at the likes of Stella McCartney, knitted at Chanel and layered at Miu Miu. As for embellishments, designers seem to have unanimously decided that Spring will have sprung rather prematurely – cheery blooms were flourishing in many places, from Chanel’s camellias to flowers at Miu Miu and Paul Smith.

So, pick out your favourite jacket, smell the flowers and see which other delightful surprises the key brands have up their sleeve for AW 2023.



Traversing a gigantic white camellia on the runway Virginie Viard’s models sported ensembles that paid tribute to that unmistakable and quintessential bloom – and emblym – of the House of Chanel.

Camellia prints appeared on ensembles and hand bags and 3-D camellias, like giant polka dots, appeared on suits. In fact, they were blooming everywhere! They even arrived in feathered form to embellished dresses, jackets and coats. Boucle coats, quilted skirts with tiny pearl accents and leather capes rubbed shoulders with knitted and belted plaid 3-piece ensembles, ribbed hounds tooth cardigans, funky leather shorts, fuzzy mohair sweaters, slinky silk dresses, cropped jackets and cheeky knickerbockers. Irresistibly cute hand bags in the shape of a camellia as well as jewellery renditions of the iconic flower all added to the ‘must-have’ factor.

It’s a collection that will have no doubt have delighted the scores of hard-core Chanel fans, but also seduced many new fans – most notably the millennials and genZees – to this ‘new’ and inclusive Maison Chanel that’s not only quirky, young at heart, fun and uber-glam but also delightfully wearable.

Watch Chanel’s show here:

Camellias are blooming everywhere! At Chanel

Feathered renditions of the iconic flower. At Chanel

Powder puff wings. At Chanel

Treble boucle, cinched in the waist. At Chanel

A ribbed two-piece suit with camellia embellishments. At Chanel

A cropped jacket and knickerbockers with matching box bag. At Chanel



Prada’s little sister brand presented a collection full of prim and proper twinsets and kitten heels – and if they weren’t presented in such neutral shades one may have mistaken them for something straight off the set of Twin Peaks. But these were neither retro nor nostalgic – instead they were forward-looking, sleek, neutral and muted in palette. And perfect for the brand’s youthful demographic who want clothes they can move in – not just for decoration.

Felted wool jackets and coats were layered, as were leather versions of the same; some jackets came complete with hoodies for a contemporary and sporty take on winterwear. Leggings sometimes accompanied the layered upper fashion, but in many instances trousers were fashionably amiss! Often one only spotted knickers (albeit cutely belted or jewellery-encrusted) peeking out from underneath all the layers of upper armour.

Apart from the no-knickers look, the rest of the collection was exceptionally well-behaved, modest and sensible for a brand that’s famous for its OTT embellishments and quirky elements. Elegant polka dot skirts and tops, forties-style halter-neck dresses and sturdy knitted ‘Mrs Doubtfire-esque’ 3-piece suits shared the stage with the odd, well-chosen pops of colour like cerise or poison green in transparent and flower-embellished organza cardigans. How does one define genius? Yet again Miuccia Prada perfectly read the mood of the moment, down to every covetable piece.

Watch Miu Miu’s show here:

Who needs slacks if you can wear micro shorts? At Miu Miu

Polka dot transparency. At Miu Miu

Quadruple layered on top – but where’s the rest? At Miu Miu

A sporty look in neutrals. At Miu Miu

A chunky knitted three-piece with contrasting bag. At Miu Miu

Spring has already sprung on this layered transparent halter neck dress. At Miu Miu

Applied blooms on this cerise ensemble. At Miu Miu

Poison green gets the floral treatment. At Miu Miu

Turquoise twinset and pinstripe perfection. At Miu Miu

Elegant in a tweed sheath. At Miu Miu

Rhinestone-embellished knickers and a sensible polo neck. At Miu Miu



Rock chick, boho goddess, queen of the coolest of parkas and doyenne of eighties-inspired clobber, Isabel Marant, magicked up a collection that was brimming with sexy leather pieces (think champagne and buttercup for shades), skin-revealing cabled jumpers, gritty biker’s and bomber jackets, square-shouldered blazers, zippered leather dresses, denim catsuits, fuzzy metallic knits and oversized sequin sweaters. Jeans got the eighties treatment too, complete with yoke in a contrasting colour. Needless to say the signature little girl boho dresses were there too, as were dresses that got the slash treatment. And sexy up-to-the-armpit thigh-high boots finished off these unmistakably casual-sexy-confident Marant ensembles.

This is a collection for the woman who knows what she likes, and likes what she knows – as long as that includes everything by Isabel Marant.

Watch Isabel Marant’s show here:

A champagne-shade leather zippered minidress. At Isabel Marant

Hole-y and cable-y! At Isabel Marant

Oxblood thigh-high boots and a matching leather mini dress. At Isabel Marant

Fuzzy metallics. At Isabel Marant

An oversized sequin sweater. At Isabel Marant



Art or fashion? Like many other Issey Miyake collections, this offering, too, was a celebration of extraordinary textured textiles that morphed into inspired silhouettes: we saw geometric, angularly-shaped garments with smooth surfaces juxtaposed with others that were quilted, we saw stripes and plains co-exist in what looked like avant-garde ‘upcycling’, and we saw some garments constructed from blanket fabric that has been heat-shrunk to form little bubble squares on the surface of suits and jackets. Other pieces consisted of asymmetrically-shaped knits, finely-striped psychedelic textiles and Mondrian-esque block colours: yellow and lavender, red and grey. It’s a magical, mesmerising and innovative display of shapes, lines, silhouettes, surface design, knits and colours – psychedelia, surrealism and modernism all in one.

Watch Issey Miyake’s show here:

A tangerine trapeze-shape jumpsuit. At Issey Miyake

Sculptural, asymmetric and graphic. At Issey Miyake

Stripes and plains create this deconstructed dress. At Issey Miyake

Heat-shunk square bubbles on this ‘blanket’ fabric two-piece suit. At Issey Miyake

Avant-garde ribs and knits in jacaranda. At Issey Miyake

Psychedelic! At Issey Miyake

Mondrian-esque block prints. At Issey Miyake

Rib-knit wizardry. At Issey Miyake



Yohji Yamamoto’s shows are characteristically personal: the maestro has always been intimately involved with the minutest details of every show – from the choice of soundtrack (he often sings too) to the way every model appears on the runway, hair tucked behind her ear, just so …

A stalwart who has given the world of high fashion forty years of unrivalled design genius, Yamamoto yet again painted a picture for Autumn Winter 2023 in his favourite shade, black. Equally Yamamoto’s signature elements – the ingenious layering, the texturing, the raw edges on hems, his iconic sculpting, the silk screening of prints and other painterly techniques – slowly got introduced as the show progressed. Similarly, colour was injected into the black palette: ‘accidental’ pops of red became stronger, until eventually an entire coat appeared in red. We saw pleats, drapes, applique, asymmetry and layering in this collection too – all shaping that silhouette that will forever be synonymous with Yohji Yamamoto.

Watch Yohji Yamamoto’s show here:

Sculptural layering. At Yohji Yamamoto

A classic pleated and draped silhouette. At Yohji Yamamoto

A duffel with a difference. At Yohji Yamamoto

Drape-y layers and sturdy shoes. At Yohji Yamamoto

Twirly red accents. At Yohji Yamamoto

Red got a cameo appearance in amongst all the black. At Yohji Yamamoto



Creator of that set of iconic stripes, Paul Smith showed a collection that will no doubt fly out of stores. The pieces are very easy to wear, useful in any wardrobe and so sensible – and that’s not to say they weren’t also utterly desirable! Beautifully tailored hounds tooth coats with a cheery flower overlay rubbed shoulders with elegant tops and skirts in an oversized flower print; double breasted jackets, marled lounge suits, velour polo necks, intarsia knitted dresses and even a fringed suede jacket and skirt made up the rest of the collection. A standout piece is the abstractly printed maxi dress with its matching faux fur collar – nothing short of Paul Smith genius tapping right into the mood of the moment.

Cobalt flowers embellish the surface of this hound’s tooth coat. At Paul Smith

Oversized flowers. At Paul Smith

Fringing in mocha suede. At Paul Smith

Loungewear in marled raspberry. At Paul Smith

An intarsia sweater-dress in inspired shades and shapes. At Paul Smith

A standout piece in the collection with its incredible colour palette and matching faux fur scarf. At Paul Smith

A furry colour-blocked coat that would sit well in any wardrobe. At Paul Smith



Stella McCartney showed her collection in a sandy arena for good reason. Horses are an intrinsic part of the collection – printed on dresses and skirts, woven into fabric and knitted into sweaters (Stella is a keen rider). The collection played on the exquisite tailoring associated with equestrian sport, but deliberately made the point that animals are not for exploitation by man (Stella is also a vegan).

Pleather trousers with an asymmetrical top, quilted pleather two-pieces, sleeveless tailored dresses, low-slung trousers, hussar jackets, hunting jackets, double denim suits and knitted oversized horsey intarsia sweaters complete with a cape were included into a collection that prides itself on the innovative use of animal product alternatives like AppleSkin (a mock croc effect made of apple waste) and Mylo (a mushroom by-product).

Watch Stella McCartney’s show here:

Double pleather. At Stella McCartney

Tailored and super elegant. At Stella McCartney

A fuzzy mohair knitted sweater complete with cape in dappled horse. At Stella McCartney

A striking padded coat and matching skirt. At Stella McCartney

A digital horse print embellishes this sleek dress. At Stella McCartney

A cropped tweed jacket exposes a bare midriff. At Stella McCartney

One of the prettiest sheath dresses at the shows. At Stella McCartney


Cecile Paul

Author at Pynck

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