Paris Men's Fashion Week FW19 runway report: Louis Vuitton, Dries Van Noten, Issey Miyake and Ami
TWO MOST SURPRISING MOMENTS
1. Waving our sparkly Michael Jackson white glove show invitation, we arrived to Tuileries Garden where the Louis Vuitton Fall-Winter 2019 set (albeit smelling of weed) spectacularly visualised the streets of New York City, as though we were on the set of Thriller with modern dwellers meandering on the streets, while graffiti artists Jim Joe, Lewy Btm and Futura work live on set. Celebrities such as Taiwan-based Singaporean singer JJ Lin together with Chinese singer Kris Wu, Japanese actor Takanori Iwata, Timothée Chalamet, rappers Offset, Kid Cudi, Skepta, Naomi Campbell and more, sat on the dweller steps (those were their official runway seats) clearly as squad Virgil Abloh. The runway show of 63 looks was accompanied by a live performance of original soundtrack You Know What’s Good composed and performed live by Devonté Hynes aka Blood Orange, along with Mikey Freedom on vocals, Hart on bass and Jason Arce on saxophone and flute. An integral part of Abloh's discovery of wardrobe staples in his boyhood paid tribute to MJ (an icon throughout his childhood and adult life) such as Penny loafers, fedoras, embellished gloves, sparkly jackets, skirting as worn by MJ in 1992’s Remember The Time music video, and triple zipping (inspired by a red leather jacket which MJ wore in Beat It music video). Tailored jackets and trousers are elevated by exaggeration of the silhouette for longer lines and expanded flares, favoured by musicians of urban jazz scenes in the 1940s. If fashion can heal the world, ‘flagification’ (defined by Abloh as 'the patchworking process where a garment is covered in the emblems of several countries or societies) attempted to send the unionification message with several looks to represent the nationalities working in Abloh's studio: France, Germany, Ghana, Great Britain, Italy, the Netherlands, Scotland, South Korea, Switzerland, the United States of America, and the state of Indiana. Abloh is definitely creating his own world without fear, and has been surprising us since his appointment.
2. With everything chaotic that is going on in the world, it seems that the best way to put oneself forward is to be in your own skin. At Dries Van Noten, the backdrop music included conversations and interview quotes of famous people that Van Noten admires, such as Diana Vreeland “I am a maximalist”, David Hockney, Andy Warhol, David Bowie, Kurt Cobain, Francis Bacon and more. “I think the whole of our society is run by insane people for insane objects," midway through the show, an English accented news anchor voiced over. Guess who? John Lennon. Essentially, it's not about whether you are a maximalist or minimalist, the Fall-Winter 2019 collection referenced to various talented artists for their individualism, seemingly evoking an attitude of nonchalance and confidence from doing everything different from others. Van Noten has been consistent with the fluidity of his menswear, this season with A-lined silhouette, from narrow DB belt jackets matched with billowy skirt-trousers to lightweight parkas over oversize trousers. Mixing prints in his collection is not new, this season we see tie-dye print explicitly throughout the last looks. This collection is a lot quieter than the previous season. The colours are muted, in mostly grey and camel. I guess what he's trying to say is: If you are not loud, it's okay. Just do you.
FOUR TRENDIEST ACCESSORIES
1. At Louis Vuitton, the multi-colour logos of a Keepall in glass fibre features LED engineering lights, echoing the colours of the world motif of the collection.
2. Louis Vuitton's Backpack Trio in monogram canvas, old school classic.
3. Issey Miyake's neon slippers to brighten up a man's look.
4. Dries Van Noten's blanket-shawl, so intelligently cut and draped over the shoulders, a nonchalant attitude.
SEVEN(ISH) FAVOURITE LOOKS
1. Louis Vuitton look #60: Flagification in the collection represents the nationalities working in Abloh's studio: France, Germany, Ghana, Great Britain, Italy, the Netherlands, Scotland, South Korea, Switzerland, the United States of America, and the state of Indiana. United flags of Abloh!
2. Louis Vuitton look #9: Skirting as worn by MJ in the form of plisse shendyt in Remember The Time music video from 1992.
3. Louis Vuitton look #33: All that sparkles, a tribute to Michael Jackson, who served as an icon in Virgil Abloh's boyhood and adult life.
4. Ami look #16: Volumised tailoring in candy colours such as sugar pink and mint green topcoats. Mattiussi called the collection “an homage to the bourgeoisie” where his Ami man was planning to have an afternoon tea with his grandmother.
5. Ami look #27: Alexandre Mattiussi is staying firmly rooted in the iconography of Paris and the patrimony of French masculine style —calm, tender, romantic and soft — highly desirable and no drama.
6. Issey Miyake look #30: The collection entitled Feeling the Wind delivered romantic technicality interspersed with paint-swirl colour print.
7. Dries Van Noten look #50: Psychedelic tie-dye print explicitly translated in this collection.
8. Dries Van Noten look #29: Outerwear in fluid volumes of monochrome brown, camel and beige.
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