The Paris Fashion Week, which took place from September 27th to October 5th 2021, came to an end with many of the big houses meeting the public for physical shows. From Olivier Rousteing’s 10th anniversary at Balmain to a vibrant tribute for Albert Elbaz, from a Koché x Tinder collab to an ultra 60’s vibe at Dior: here are the highlights of this spring-summer 2022 season.
Ten years is something to celebrate! Olivier Rousteing is one of the youngest couturiers to have arrived at the head of such a prestigious fashion house when he was only 25. Even better, in 10 years, the Frenchman, who is close to the biggest American stars, has made Balmain one of the most successful in the fashion industry. For his anniversary show, the wonder boy took over the Seine musicale with bling and glam for all: everything he masters with panache. Naomi Campbell, Cindy Bruma, Precious Lee, Adut Akech, Milla Jovovich, Mariacarla Boscono, Lara Stone and Carla Bruni took to the catwalk to present a collection of monochrome palettes in which the bold cuts of trousers, dresses and tops stood side by side with the meticulous workmanship of the beaded dresses and the work of the Lesage embroidery workshops. An exceptional show that brought together no less than 6000 spectators.
Maria Grazia Chiuri continued to reinvent the Dior woman by paying tribute to Marc Bohan’s 1961 Slim Look collection. The scenography set up in the Jardins des Tuileries immersed the spectators in a life-size game of goose and allowed a detailed analysis of the sixties silhouettes in saturated colours. Grass green, tangerine orange, cobalt blue and lemon yellow were used on pieces reminiscent of the pop years, which were crucial to women’s emancipation. We saw tailored skirts, chasuble dresses and straight coats. We also ogled satin outfits largely inspired by boxing, bowling bags and square-toed boots. On the other hand, mini skirts and sequin dresses punctuated the show, where lightness and joy reigned.
For Christelle Koché, change is now. This street-influenced couture enthusiast is returning to her first love. Meticulous work with feathers and embroidery was the order of the day in this listed building. Her collection was presented in the heart of the Shangri La Hotel, formerly the residence of Prince Roland Bonaparte. Beads and graphic prints made their eldorado, but there was no question of dropping hoodies, crewnecks or joggers either. Just dabbled in sequins and satin. Another big surprise? A collaboration with the famous dating app Tinder, to celebrate love, diversity and seduction.
Retro atmosphere at Chanel SS22 by Virginie Viard, but in the 80’s! “I loved the sound of the flashbulbs going off during shows in the eighties, when the models were parading on a raised catwalk. I wanted to recapture that emotion,” the artistic director confided in the press release for the show. And the expected effect was there. Between the complicity of the models, chains on the navel, choker necklaces, pink, mauve or yellow tweed and vanity bags… We even hoped to see Claudia Schiffer and her eternal audacity!
At Ester Manas
In the line of young talents who advocate a no-fuss, sincere and 100% inclusive fashion: Ester Manas continues to impress. The young French-Belgian label unveiled its very first physical show called “Dress different”. The duo Ester Manas and Balthazar Delepierre chose to show models that the fashion industry would call “plus size”. However, the brand has simply decided to dress women, without distinction, in the same way that Rihanna does for Savage x Fenty. And to make them look good? Nothing could be more glamorous than sexy cut-outs that reveal the hips and collarbones, cowgirl outfits, “Manas Mountain” prints or even dresses and ruched tops where transparency is king.
At Az Factory
“Love brings love”: it was THE event show that closed the fashion week. A vibrant tribute to the late Alber Elbaz who passed away on April 24th. The AZ Factory label, which the designer founded shortly after his departure from Lanvin, brought together the cream of the creative world for this exceptional show. In total? 40 designers including Demna Gvasalia, Jean Paul Gaultier, Olivier Rousteing, Raf Simons, Maria Grazia Chiuri, Alessandro Michele, Matthew Williams, Daniel Lee, Dries van Noten and many others.p.