Cathy Horyn Paris Fashion Week Review: Kanye, Hermès & More

Photo-Illustration: The Cut; Photo: Getty Images

If you were about to announce the return to Paris Fashion Week after a two-year absence, who would you call? Why, Brienne of Tarth, of course. To say that Game of Thrones actress Gwendoline Christie peeking over Thom Browne’s runway in the majestic Opéra Garnier is an understatement. The entire 6-foot, 3-inch actress, along with a gold-embroidered silk tent-sized gown, wowed the audience. I would give anything to see Janet Jackson’s face – pop star front and center – but I’m too busy with Christie’s fairy tale charm.

This has been a completely absurd Parisian season, in the best and worst sense. And it’s not over yet: The spring 2023 collections are introduced later today with Chanel, Louis Vuitton and Miu Miu. To recap, though, we got to see Demna’s mud show and the dubious pleasures of Coperni’s spray dress. Just think: One day, you might get your tan and your party outfit at a salon near your food court. It’s not an impossible dream, as this week everything has become surprisingly clear.

The designers here have a great desire to capitalize on change, to be more open, to be more creative and to have more fun. Indeed, the gap between those who grasp the post-pandemic moment and those who speak nonsense (Valentino, Givenchy and Chloé, just to mention three) is substantial.

Thom Browne.
Photo: Getty Images

Browne has done clever presentations in the past, such as the movie he shot in Utah where Lindsey Vonn was skiing in his costume while the rest of his collection printed. ball on snow. But despite Browne’s wit showing off his strict bar chic and his hot dog bags, he never lets his hair down exactly. Monday’s show saw Browne glide, with Christie’s help, through the Cinderella story and then jump into the American-style prom and country club segment, in tights pastel polka dot tops and jackets, and bright red or green swing skirts and tight sweaters (and Olivia Newton-John on the speaker), before traveling into punk.

So he loosens his corset and we burst out laughing. That’s the change in Browne, not so much in his aesthetic. The performance also reminded me of a ritual of the journey: leaving home. Near the end, a group of men held a fake convertible that a model had pretended to be driving down the runway. It’s not a American graffiti though. It’s Paris, and she’s walking towards Christie and a cast of girls dancing in their beautiful clothes – to a new life.

Photo: Getty Images

Hermès takes the sexy train for spring. Hermes? Unless whips and riding boots are your thing, you wouldn’t think of House of Birkin for sheer body-hugging gowns in the sunset colors of the Med. But the firm’s women’s designer, Nadège Vanhee-Cybulski, is as hot as the others. Or as she puts it, “I really want to celebrate getting back outside and feeling the wind, the heat, and the sweat on your skin.” Vanhee-Cybulski created the image of walking in the desert – thus discreetly using hiking materials like rope and beanie (as detailing on the pants) and the huge pile of sand in the middle of her suit . The semi-sheer dresses – some with zippers that can be partially opened – showcased her skills in a fresh way. Other designers will likely show variations of the black two-piece leather dress with a criss-cross over the topless tunic. Vanhee-Cybulski did it once and let it smolder between the horse and scarf print dividers.

Stella McCartney.
Photo: Getty Images

Jerry Seinfeld and Jeff Koons were in the stands at Stella McCartney, on the cobblestones in front of Center Pompidou. Some of her loose pants and jackets, tank tops with chains and worn with skinny jeans, and jumpsuits recall earlier collections, but I bet the clothes are well made now. than. They looked at it, anyway. This is a smart, no-frills Stella collection with color and is geared towards women who care more about sharp images and cool British atmosphere than trends.

Photo: Courtesy of Sacai

Another designer whose outfits make up a new contract is Chitose Abe. Her Sacai collection often leaves me cold; shapes can seem meaninglessly complex. But I like her to wear black coats (with open sleeves in an early Comme des Garçons style) over a white cotton shirt with sleeves and a mini skirt or skinny pants with ruffles and flares. Military-inspired separations like a pleated sleeveless shirt paired with casual pants or an off-the-shoulder khaki jacket strike a balance between masculine function and feminine float.

Photo: Courtesy of Theyskens

“We wanted to do things in the best way possible,” says Olivier Theyskens in his studio courtyard, where he presents his remarkable collection of hand-made dresses in patches of lamé and translucent chiffon. “And we do it the way we want. If something doesn’t look good, we’ll fix it. We don’t think that clothing has a place somewhere.”

Theyskens’ refusal to compete for a “place” in an industry that once loved him – at Rochas and Nina Ricci – is refreshing. Six people made the patchwork dresses – from strips of cut fabric that were reassembled, dyed or treated and then worked directly on the body, textures and colors to create effective results best. They are reminiscent of stained glass windows, with elegant and delicate colors. Theyskens also created a beautiful black leather suit all over with small, irregularly cut leather patches, and a new patchwork skirt style, with rolled seams around the torso. “I made a wedding dress for someone with that technique,” ​​he told me. “It’s one way to grow.”

Ye brought her brand to shows in Paris on Monday night. His trademark is Yeezy, of course, but it’s also chaotic, Sunday choir music, provocation, complaints turning into self-promotion and the ability to force editors and editors literature against their better judgment. Although the collection has been in the works for the past two months, according to Shayne Oliver, who has worked with the Yeezy studio, the show was promoted as a “secret” event. Call it an interrupt.

The truth is that most people connected to the industry are curious about one possibility. They walk in faith. But for all her visual skills and obviously good instincts, Ye should have done better – on all counts. He kept the audience there for two hours. Anna Wintour left after an hour, apparently for another engagement, and so did John Galliano. Before he wore any clothes, Ye, wearing a T-shirt that read “White Lives Matter” – he didn’t then explain why he was wearing it – gave a five-minute monologue. about why he feels disrespected. out of the industry and that he was the “leader”.

And when more bald models finally show up, you can hardly see the oval coats and miniskirts. No runway lighting. Anyhow, the suit looks pretty much the same as the Yeezys before, which makes me want to see more of the hands of Oliver, the founder of Hood by Air.

As one guest aptly put it, if you’re about to have an interruption, that helps with your content rendering.

We’re not quite at the end of this most special season. However, I am saying the last word to Seinfeld. He and his wife, Jessica, went out Monday night with some friends at a small comedy club here. He was invited to the stage in an impromptu session.

“This makes no sense,” he said. “It’s not necessary. I do not change. I’m just fine in America. I came here for Fashion Week”. He looked. “You don’t need a whole week.” Cathy Horyn Paris Fashion Week Review: Kanye, Hermès & More

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