#SuzyPFW: A Millennial Vision Of Parisian Chic

Could Parisian chic – that poncey, ladylike look that died somewhere between grunge and sportswear – really be back in fashion?

A trio of designers showing on the opening day of Paris fashion week, presented, each in different ways, a 21st-century French elegance: tidy clothes, fresh looks and a pulled-together style that makes ‘casual’ seem sloppy.

ADVERTISEMENT

The discreet charm of Olivier Theyskens

Olivier Theyskens Autumn/Winter 2017

Olivier Theyskens Autumn/Winter 2017

Olivier Theyskens Autumn/Winter 2017

Indigital

First up was Olivier Theyskens who showed his collection of neat-and-tidy shapes, with a touch of Victorian prudishness in buttoned-up-fastenings, mixed with sweet-young-thing black dresses that recalled his beginnings. Since then, he has been high – as designer for Rochas – and low, when he worked with Theory in America – and has now come through to a perfect positioning.

Olivier Theyskens Autumn/Winter 2017

Olivier Theyskens Autumn/Winter 2017

Olivier Theyskens Autumn/Winter 2017

Indigital

Showing against the ornate and colourful background of Le Train Bleu, the historic restaurant at the Paris train station to the South of France, Theyskens said that the plethora of black was to contrast with the surroundings. But surely what he meant was that there is nothing more chic and sexy than a black leather trench sashed close to the body, or an LBD with the thigh-high hemline stopping where the fingertips of elbow length black gloves fall.

Olivier Theyskens Autumn/Winter 2017

Olivier Theyskens Autumn/Winter 2017

Olivier Theyskens Autumn/Winter 2017

Indigital

ADVERTISEMENT

Theyskens is Parisian style incarnate: the insert of black lace into the neckline; neat pointed shoes recalling Catherine Deneuve in her heyday; a judicious use of colour from pine-green, through a dose of bright yellow, to a touch of absinthe. The only thing missing was one of the designer's long evening dresses trailing like cigarette smoke into thin air. But now that he is back on the Paris fashion track, that cannot be far behind.

Olivier Theyskens Autumn/Winter 2017

Olivier Theyskens Autumn/Winter 2017

Olivier Theyskens Autumn/Winter 2017

Indigital

ADVERTISEMENT

Koché: Down-to-earth delicacy

The Folies Bergère – the Parisian musical hall from the days of Édouard Manet paintings and Josephine Baker's banana skirt – seemed an unlikely setting for Koché. The fledgling brand’s identity is poised between street cool and delicate workmanship from designer Christelle Kocher.

Koché Autumn/Winter 2017

Koché Autumn/Winter 2017

Koché Autumn/Winter 2017

Indigital

That was manifested, as the models walked down the grand, carpeted stairway, by a puffed-up parka with feathers trapped under a high-tech plasticised cover – just one example of the intersection of street style and couture detailing.

Koché Autumn/Winter 2017

Koché Autumn/Winter 2017

Koché Autumn/Winter 2017

Indigital

The choice of a theatre, where women are still performing in few clothes but adorned with arches of feathers, also fits with Kocher's day job as the artistic director of Lemarié, the feather atelier in Chanel's subsidiary of couture accessory companies grouped as Paraffection. Backstage, the designer showed me her first bejewelled shoes, designed by working with other Chanel-owned specialist companies Goossens and Massaro.

“I wanted to contrast the street and the fantastic,” Kocher said.

These young French designers all seem to have an innate understanding of haute couture unhindered by reverential awe. So Kocher, who showed both women's and men's designs, could take a striped sports shirt and pair it with a swish of a silken draped skirt; or a tailored, buttoned up, feather trimmed coat worn with baggy track pants and sneakers.

Koché Autumn/Winter 2017

Koché Autumn/Winter 2017

Koché Autumn/Winter 2017

Indigital

The art was in the mix of style and function. And the dramatic set only enhanced the sense that Koché is a brand to watch.

Jacquemus: Profound beauty

Jacquemus is the real thing. Or to be more precise, Simon Porte Jacquemus, the man behind the label, is the incarnation of a French spirit in fashion that could not be found in any other country. From his early stages of broken beauty, with slashed cloth giving a flash of rage to his work, the designer, winner of a special award from the 2015 LVMH talent spotting contest, sent out the most beautiful and meaningful collection.

tiny.gif

188b889041.jpg

Indigital

It all started with Christian Lacroix, his long-time hero, and a visit to Lacroix county: Arles, in the South of France. Then, as Simon explained in his show notes, a deeper connection: his uncle, who was a toreador, made friends with Lacroix and all these references melded into his fashion inspiration as an impossible love affair between the Jacquemus girl and a gitane, or Roma gypsy.

Hence: curvy shawl colours and abstractions of frills, as worn in the traditional Provençal dress; and matador pants with cropped legs and raised waists. The surreal little hats, curved up at the side, looked like Picasso's harlequin headwear, but the way they topped off the clothes, seemed both classic and modern.

Jacquemus Autumn/Winter 2017

Jacquemus Autumn/Winter 2017

Jacquemus Autumn/Winter 2017

Indigital

The influence of Lacroix appeared in a black and white dotted blouse with curvy shoulders from the 1980s. Those same puffed shoulders on the runway in ink blue satin were exceptionally stylish in a manner that was quintessentially Parisian within a broader French aesthetic.

ADVERTISEMENT

The Lacroix legacy from 1987 – 30 years ago – is still profound. But the wonder of Jacquemus is that the young designer, born three years later and now only 27, has found a way of absorbing the couture spirit and translating it into wearable and price accessible ready-to-wear.

Jacquemus Autumn/Winter 2017

Jacquemus Autumn/Winter 2017

Jacquemus Autumn/Winter 2017

Indigital

Adrian Joffe, President and CEO of Dover Street Market and Comme des Garçons and an ardent supporter of off-the-radar talent, says that the pricing of the Jacquemus clothes is reasonable enough to attract an eager young clientele. This show, in black and white but presented on a sugar pink runway, was picture perfect.

Vogue

Get the latest news delivered to your inbox

Follow us on social media networks

 
Zanobya Magazine