Setting the Scene !

Huge screens capturing the audience while they chattered and waited for the show to start, subsequently followed by a man splashing around in the sea, the harsh noise of water crashing around him and his struggle with a barrel at Loewe (in fact, a piece by artist Magali Reus); models wearing projection belts at Chalayan, graphics posted up on the wall while a voice read out aloud the show notes; a ghostly billowing curtain at Aganovich from which the model creatures appeared; an underwater world at Mugler with a rippled reflection surrounding us as though we were down deep, really deep; a burst of bright shine at the end of the Haider Ackermann catwalk as though the dawn of a new day, a new world even, had begun; a glitter strewn catwalk at Elie Saab and a purple world at Nina Ricci: setting the scene at a show is important stuff. 

Of course, we all know that it’s part of the Insta-way now. And it's always been part of the fashion show spectacle way. There needs to be a moment for it all to come together and now more than ever that shot needs to be taken. But it’s more than that. “At the end of the day it’s really the perception that carries it there,” points out Vejas Kruszewski, the young designer behind new must-know brand Vejas, which has already been given the seal of approval from LVMH. And perception begins most obviously at the show – or presentation, or whatever it may be – as a vehicle to convey that original seed of inspiration, to elaborate upon it.  

 

 Chalayan Fashion Show Ready-to-wear Collection Spring Summer 2017 Paris

 

Hussein Chalayan, for example, has always been a designer for whom technology and technique have been at the heart of what he does. While fashion still grapples with wearable tech, it’s something he’s been touching upon for years. And here, his sci-fi belts with the running commentary about the state of the world and of consciousness – “I am feeling nervous in your presence,” read an opening line; later followed by “I find it difficult to express my emotions – my accessories are helping me measure how much I can reveal” – enabled him to make that point. The rest of the collection fused bulbous sleeves and typical sharp tailoring, some exaggerated backpack shapes in there too and later some inflated dresses – the hand-raising shot. In many ways, the Insta-moment has been happening for years, we just didn’t have our phones at the ready yet. 

 

 Loewe Fashion Show Ready-to-wear Collection Spring Summer 2017 Paris

 

At Loewe, three-quarters or so of the show saw the Reus film as the soundtrack to the collection before music finally set in. It was at times distracting, the shipwrecked models literally lost to the attention of this semi-installation. But Jonathan Anderson has always been one to collaborate and experiment, explore and push new ways of doing things. And it did make for something arresting and compelling. Clothes-wise, there came shawls, which were nostalgic yet new at the same time, a worked nature to everything enhanced by layered silhouettes, thick-thick belts that were more like corsets sculpting them into shape. The latter is something we’ve been seeing a lot of in Paris ever since Mrs Prada sent them out last season. A couple have been spotted on the streets, but one can’t help but think they still don’t entirely work there. 

 

 Comme des Garçons Fashion Show Ready-to-wear Collection Spring Summer 2017 Paris

 

But setting the scene needn’t be so serious. Yes, there are the likes of Comme des Garçons, where it’s akin to going to a place of worship – the lights maintain a faint mist and the music is impending, the crowd serious and waiting for the answers of life to reveal themselves. Here Rei seemingly took ideas of clothes themselves, say a skirt, and then made that into an entire outfit, the model inserted into it. There were dresses that piled up and climbed up around them, and Anna Cleveland became the intellectual butterfly emerging from her cocoon. It, too, as it always is, was compelling. 

 

 Elie Saab Fashion Show Ready-to-wear Collection Spring Summer 2017 Paris

 

Setting the scene allows for fun as well – and there are plenty of names out there who do this brilliantly. Chanel, of course, is a magic world of sets. But for a designer like Elie Saab, it proved he has more to him than just a pretty whimsical princess dress. The Lebanese designer is a red carpet favourite and there’s surely not enough time in the world to wear all of his fairytale creations, no matter how many invites you may have. But here he parti-fied his look. It was disco time with plenty of shine. Smoke – mysterious smoke – erupted from the purple shimmering catwalk (covered in glitter, careful you don’t slip!) and out came club caps and sequin-slinky dresses, billowing capes and gold glitter tailoring. Rivets and studs, purple and orange, there was fringing and bling – it was bright and bold, his whimsical princess style made funky and contemporary. It was nice to see another side to him. This was fun and, among his repertoire, fresh. 

 

 Mugler Fashion Show Ready-to-wear Collection Spring Summer 2017 Paris

 

But from discos to the deep sea. David Koma took oceanic inspiration for Mugler, the house at which he’s been creative director since 2013. And he’s nailing it. Mugler, like so many maisons of late, had been having a tricky time. It was a house with a big heritage name, but how do you translate that to working now? You hire Koma, whose own aesthetic is the perfect fit. His sinuous and smouldering silhouettes were scaled with sequins, tailoring was done to scuba-fit, and asymmetric lines and layers swooped around the body to flattering effect. Koma has been carefully refining what he’s doing at the house since he arrived and he’s made it just the right kind of Mugler: sexy, contemporary, and entirely in-keeping with what it should be now. 

 

 Nina Ricci Fashion Show Ready-to-wear Collection Spring Summer 2017 Paris

 

Guillaume Henry, too, is doing much the same at Nina Ricci. The former Carven wunderkind, he seduced us in purple – a magenta-glowing catwalk and opening looks that wandered from maroon and lavender to mulberry and lilac. He got that louche and luxe partisan tailoring spot on; he tapped the dark, sexy, and seductive side of the house just right – via boudoir hints and nods; he got that daywear element flawlessly for midi-slit skirts and more tailoring but then sexed it up with a high heel and a mac addition. There came a magenta-dipped version of that ruby red one last time (swoon); it was sultry throughout with some of the designer’s own playful quirks in racer stripes to give pace and verve – that was the kind of youthful charm that saw him make Carven what it was. Like Mugler, it felt like the way Nina Ricci should be now. 

 

 Haider Ackermann Fashion Show Ready-to-wear Collection Spring Summer 2017 Paris

 

Naturally, as well as the set environment, it can be as much about who is in the front row. At Haider Ackermann, that was Tilda Swinton. The pair are good friends and she encompasses that sophisticated, intelligent and slightly mysterious nature of his designs. With this collection he relaxed, and eased into more casual fare – a hoodie even in there to be spotted. It followed that musical-inspired edge we saw in the menswear collection, the colours bright and electric; but overall Ackermann loosened up, did his version of casual, his version of sports even, one we’d be happy to see more of. And in all of these, plenty of scenes have been set for Spring/Summer 2017. 

 

Read our latest fashion features and trend reports in NOWMagazine.

SHARE
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Pinterest
SIMILAR ARTICLES
Culti Scandi Label Cecilie Bahnsen Debuts Shoe Collection with Charles Keith
By Elisa Carassai
Joining forces this week are designers Charles & Keith and Cecile Bahnsen, who collaborated on an...
By Elisa Carassai
Joining forces this week are designers Charles & Keith and Cecile Bahnsen, who collaborated on an exciting shoe line inspired by traditional school-wear. The collection features some of the most classic Charles & Keith shapes and silhouettes which are reinterpreted by Bahnsen and finished with...
Joining forces this week are designers Charles & Keith and Cecile Bahnsen, who collaborated on an exciting shoe line inspired by traditional school-wear. The collection features some of the most classic Charles & Keith shapes and silhouettes which are reinterpreted by Bahnsen and finished with her signature brooch. Four various styles are featured including three Mary Jane designs and a...
Five CBD Brands That Are Doing it Right
By Ludovica Parisi
CBD is being marketed everywhere. From oils and topicals to edibles, there are now infinite ways...
By Ludovica Parisi
CBD is being marketed everywhere. From oils and topicals to edibles, there are now infinite ways to introduce cannabidiols in your lifestyle. However, as buyers get overwhelmed by the number of products being launched every week, companies have to work harder to stand out from the competition....
CBD is being marketed everywhere. From oils and topicals to edibles, there are now infinite ways to introduce cannabidiols in your lifestyle. However, as buyers get overwhelmed by the number of products being launched every week, companies have to work harder to stand out from the competition. So, what is the strategic approach to ensure people’s trust in a product? The answer lies in the...
Cuoio di Toscana Launches Campaign Against Domestic Violence
By Alice Ierace
Italian sole-leather brand Cuoio di Toscana, alongside many companies and institutions of fashion...
By Alice Ierace
Italian sole-leather brand Cuoio di Toscana, alongside many companies and institutions of fashion and luxury leather goods, shared their the commitment to defend women. “Violence against women does not go into quarantine: at the expense of the current moment of emergency, the numbers affecting...
Italian sole-leather brand Cuoio di Toscana, alongside many companies and institutions of fashion and luxury leather goods, shared their the commitment to defend women. “Violence against women does not go into quarantine: at the expense of the current moment of emergency, the numbers affecting this social injury show no sign of diminishing and, if we consider the case of domestic violence in...
Burberry Reports Significant Revenue Loss
By Rebecca Hitchon
Luxury fashion house Burberry has released its preliminary results for the past financial year...
By Rebecca Hitchon
Luxury fashion house Burberry has released its preliminary results for the past financial year ending 28th March, revealing the impact of COVID-19 on the business.Although the report discusses positive responses to its SS20 and AW20 collections and sales higher than expected earlier in the...
Luxury fashion house Burberry has released its preliminary results for the past financial year ending 28th March, revealing the impact of COVID-19 on the business.Although the report discusses positive responses to its SS20 and AW20 collections and sales higher than expected earlier in the year, the outbreak of COVID-19 in late January negatively affected the financial year. Store closures,...
Meryll Rogge’s Last Days of Disco
By Elisa Carassai
New York has always been a source of inspiration for...
By Elisa Carassai
New York has always been a source of inspiration for creatives. From writers, to artists, poets and designers, the city that never sleeps always seems to provide the right canvas for the creation of the most exciting ventures.   One of these...
New York has always been a source of inspiration for creatives. From writers, to artists, poets and designers, the city that never sleeps always seems to provide the right canvas for the creation of the most exciting ventures.   One of these creatives is 35-year-old Meryll Rogge. A former student of Walter Van Beirendock at Antwerp’s Academy...
Hindsight: Yale Photography On Sexuality and Mundanity
By Sasha Regazzoni
“When you think of your insides, do you imagine a river or...
By Sasha Regazzoni
“When you think of your insides, do you imagine a river or a volcano or … ? What is pleasure without climax? Can there be art without ego?”   In the opening essay of ‘Hindsight’, Yale School of Art’s 2020 MFA Photography graduate show which...
“When you think of your insides, do you imagine a river or a volcano or … ? What is pleasure without climax? Can there be art without ego?”   In the opening essay of ‘Hindsight’, Yale School of Art’s 2020 MFA Photography graduate show which launched last week, writer and visual artist Carmen Winant poses a series of “Questions for...
Neorealist Beauty Meets Italian Craftsmanship with 'Il Traffico'
By Amanda Ballerini
In our newly-minted column on independent brands, our favourite 'Instagram Scouter' Amanda...
By Amanda Ballerini
In our newly-minted column on independent brands, our favourite 'Instagram Scouter' Amanda Ballerini talks shoes, cinema and what they represent and eventually become, with independent brand Il Traffico's designer Marco Antonio Marra.I first discovered Marco Antonio Marra's work some months ago...
In our newly-minted column on independent brands, our favourite 'Instagram Scouter' Amanda Ballerini talks shoes, cinema and what they represent and eventually become, with independent brand Il Traffico's designer Marco Antonio Marra.I first discovered Marco Antonio Marra's work some months ago via Instagram. At the time, his page called' Il Traffico' was a project in development, physical...
Levi’s Celebrates 501 Day
By Alice Ierace
Levi’s, the brand behind the iconic blue denim, has been quite active on Instagram. Over the last...
By Alice Ierace
By Alice Ierace
Levi’s, the brand behind the iconic blue denim, has been quite active on Instagram. Over the last few weeks, music and denim fans alike have been tuning in and rocking out to the brand’s 5:01 Live series on Instagram for live-streamed concerts, panel talks and customization sessions. Today, they...
Levi’s, the brand behind the iconic blue denim, has been quite active on Instagram. Over the last few weeks, music and denim fans alike have been tuning in and rocking out to the brand’s 5:01 Live series on Instagram for live-streamed concerts, panel talks and customization sessions. Today, they celebrate the birthday of their iconic 501 blue jean with live performances from around Europe and...