Is there anything Carol Lim and Humberto Leon can do wrong? Hot on the (w)heels of their first show in New York for their own Opening Ceremony, they absconded to Paris with the rest of the fashion pack to show a very sound Kenzo collection.
In the vast hall of Besson’s Cité du Cinema in the suburban town of Saint Denis (one editor complained that “it might well be in Belgium”), Lim and Leon organized an aquatic sound system to complement the gigantic rain curtain behind which models could be viewed before the show.
The pair’s witty takes on animals was not forgotten; next summer, embroidered fish patches – used en masse on a dress, or a matching mini skirt – will be the de-rigueur outfit to be street-snapped to death. But there was a not-so-hidden message behind them, announced in the show notes, on posters stuck to the doors and also on a dress “no fish, no nothing”. This straightforward ecological concern, not unlike the Earth-aware position of Vivienne Westwood, was delivered in a highly attractive package.
Easy California living translated itself into a more sophisticated selection with a good injection of tailoring, which will also appeal to those who think they’re over the whole sportswear thing. The sleeveless vest, remade in slightly oversized proportions and in a rainfall blue print, has a youthfully dressy vibe. Caught in a waist cincher, it becomes a handsome dress. A sinuous hem echoed water but also the shape of a sound wave, as the water placed above speakers bounced with every beat. Attractive, familiar without being too repetitive, it continues to develop the Lim & Leon spin to Kenzo that has fashionistas beating down the doors to get their hands on them. From the clapping that drowned out the aquatic soundtrack, clearly summer 14 will not be a wash.
Daria Shapovalova at Paris Fashion Week S/S 2014: Kenzo