Fashion Commentary

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Paris - Catwalk-Trends Fall 2013 & Winter 2014


Catwalk-Trends Fall 2013 & Winter 2014



When it’s done by Hermès, it raises the bar and adds a few surprises (Hermes Fall 2013: Hitchcock’s Rebecca). If anyone had reservations about Christophe Lemaire’s capabilities, this collection is his graduation slip. The line-up lived up to the brand’s hype, it was as discretely elegant as it was luxurious. Mr. Lemaire knows his assets – the best leathers, exotic skins and furs – and wisely worked them into his collection gradually shuffling look after look to make this collection memorable.




Because Hermès is famously Classic, its designs are timeless. From double-breasted pea coats in cashmere to flight jackets in ostrich to rich lamb coats bridging conventional usage, the collection elevated the concept of chic and discrete.




Givenchy Fall 2013 reintroduced Grunge to those who missed it the first time. Actually, Mr. Tisci’s version is the way it ought to be nowadays. After all, Grunge was all about appropriation. Back then, discarded thrift-shop finds and army-navy surplus stuff. Today’s appropriation is more complex. It is both technologically driven and historically ambiguous. Who knew that combining plaids with floral prints, morphing Street style with couture techniques, pairing quilting with fur, could look so “The Next Big Thing”?



Among the looks there were even some polished styles for the more traditional Givenchy client. Ricardo Tisci’s vision is hard to pin down, so why be a stickler for conventions? This collection will be directional without a doubt, and the cash register will tell the rest of the story.




Lanvin Fall 2013 encapsulated what fashion is all about: the craft of producing the garment coupled with how an individual makes it come alive. The line-up had it all, from sophisticated daywear to relaxed eveningwear by way of draped suits, knee-length flared skirts and innovative fur fashion chubbies. What Lanvin managed to do was embrace the house’s own savoir-faire as well as Alber Elbaz’s quirky sense of humor.




The collection felt like a well-curated wardrobe, pairing investment pieces with fashionable additions. The furs bridged Old School glamour with innovative adaptations. Elbaz played with color and fur mixing for a few looks, introduced super long fox boas and brilliantly reworked the iconic fox chubby. The approach felt haute couture yet still managed to show some street cred.




Paul & Joe gave us strolling gals with a relaxed sartorial attitude. This very Parisian youth-driven label is famous for its sporty takes on day to evening wardrobe staples. Separates are its bread and butter, as is its outerwear. The coats definitely made the statement, from wool to color-blocked shearlings with their fur side out to patchwork fox.



The very well balanced soft palette of dusty pink to cappuccino gave the line-up a more sophisticated feel, which counterbalanced the styling’s dégagé attitude. The few notes of brocades with their reflective golden touches mixed effortlessly well with the other seemingly separate design concepts.



Van Noten

It is reputed that Opposites Attract. Dries Van Noten Fall 2013 took that to heart and delivered a collection full of duality from volume to shapes. What appears different in this collection is the conceptual womenswear appropriation of menswear. The line-up had lovely grey suits (as well as floral ones), tailored skirt ensembles, dresses and gowns that were all equally tailored, layered, and treated.



The collection had its decorative and ornamental side too, where embroideries and feather-work perpendicularly matched the impact of volume found in the casual layering and furs. As odd as the collection sounds, it read clear and clean in the way only Dries Von Noten can do




Valentino Fall 2013 looked north, more specifically to the Netherlands for its rich portraiture. The Dutch influence guided an austere and serene collection that coincidentally revisited some of the labels past 1960s creations. The astute choice of lines, materials and treatments made this line-up a show-stopping marvel. Who could have anticipated that simplifying looks to their bare minimum would make them so striking and chic?



Pier Paolo Piccioli and Maria Grazia Chiuri’s taste is complicated and daunting at times, so when an idea is well-executed and comes out the intended way, it is special to witness. On the fur front, the collection was much more experimental. Their mink “ermine” pattern made for a standout coat and even made its way down to skirts. Their white mink embroidery showed greater risk.



Paris: Catwalk-Trends Autumn Winter 2011-12