Representing the epilogue of the recent men's fashion shows in Europe, Paris should have been a celebratory coda, but instead the mood had been dampened -- literally -- by weeks of rain, and also by the Brexit vote that would have repercussions in the fashion world and beyond. But the show, as they say, must go on, and six prominent designers to know -- Vetements, Thom Browne, Louis Vuitton, Off-White, Y-3 and Pigalle -- revealed their Spring 2017 collections, looking to sunny days ahead.
It's clear Vetements makes its own rules, as designer Demna Gvasalia subverted tradition by holding his runway show at the Galeries Lafayette department store during business hours. There were a total of 18 collaborations on display, a quick and dirty strategy for couture, borrowing the "know-how" of established labels and fusing it with the youthful energy that Vetements brings.
Thom Browne is noted for injecting wit and irreverence to his runway shows, and his Spring 2017 presentation in Paris was no execption. His signature grayscale vision was imbued with swimsuit-like onesies, poolside cocktails, surfboards and even models dressed as sharks and seagulls, resulting in a beach spectacle from an otherworldly island.
Travel was the leitmotif that inspired Louis Vuitton's Spring 2017 collection. Designer Kim Jones looked to Africa, where he grew up, to appoint outerwear with crocodile and ostrich, while punk rock undertones reflected London, where Jones was schooled.
Virgil Abloh's Off-White has undergone quite an evolution in three short years, and the label's Spring 2017 collection shows it's ready to take ever bigger risks. Titled "Mirror Mirror," the collection was all about appearances; specifically, the premise of "facade," which, in the case of Off-White, indicates fashion-forward daring beyond its streetwear roots.
Legendary designer Yohji Yamamoto was determined to bring the future to Paris, sending his models marching down a stark white runway, a backdrop well-suited to showing off the mostly black-hued apparel. Geometric lines and built-in fans underscored the futuristic aesthetic, while NOCI 0003 sneakers made in collaboration with adidas spoke to Y-3's athletic roots.
Pigalle founder Stéphane Ashpool tied the knot with his girlfriend in a symbolic ceremony at the garden of the Musée de Montmartre, and the romantic gesture clearly extended to the models for Pigalle's Spring 2017 presentation. Made up a crew including musicians and Ashpool's personal friends, the models were kitted out in pastel hues and delicate fabrics fit for a summer wedding.