Best shows from PMFW SS18: Sacai, Dior Homme, Henrik Vibskov and Hermès
It's Saturday in Paris but that doesn't mean it's any less crowded on the streets. As editor-in-chief Norman Tan battles the traffic to get to the shows, listen in as he talks you through the latest runway trends, picks the pieces he's already wish-listed for next season, and chats to Kris van Assche backstage about his highly tailored collection for Dior Homme spring/summer 2018.
As always, scroll down to look at the runway images as you listen to Norman talk you through the shows.
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SACAI: BRING ON THE BERMS
Designer: Chitose Abe
All you need to know: Held in the futuristic Cité de la musique, all the way out in the 19th arrondissement on an early Saturday morn — I literally just made the show; was one of the last guests to walk in — Sacai was a fusion of deconstructed punk street wear, by way of strapped parkas and terry toweling tops, combined with western fringe detailing on teal blue and emerald green jackets. There were a series of black-and-white ensembles slathered with logos and harnessed with backpacks, but my favourite look was the multi-coloured (almost madras) check applied to a parka in warm hues paired with matching shorts. Talking about shorts, almost every menswear look was presented with knee-length Bermudas. Time to bare your legs, gentlemen.
DIOR HOMME: LATENIGHT SUMMER
Designer: Kris van Assche
All you need to know: "I wanted to rework the DNA of the brand, which is a black fitted suit and a white shirt," said Kris van Assche backstage after the show; explaining why he started his spring/summer 2018 runway with formal wear instead of the common practice of beginning with casual attire. "And I wanted to prepare this for the future. How can we give it a new identity?" The result? Van Assche paraded a modern tailored offering down the grass-covered runway in the Grand Palais under a sky of black tinsel. Think: Shrunken double-breasted black suits paired with a long belt-scarf bearing the words 'Christian Dior Atelier No. 3 Rue Marignan'; knee-length and backless gilets revealing a T-shirt printed with the same atelier address; and, my top pick, that three-piece single-breasted suit printed all over with ribbons also bearing the atelier address. Backed by a killer soundtrack produced by Frédéric Sanchez — a hypnotic mix of 'Creep' by Radiohead, 'Losing my religion' by R.E.M., and 'Enjoy the silence' by Depeche Mode — casual wear came in the form of sleeveless tops with collegiate typeface spelling out 'Latenight Paris' contrasted with full and long black trousers; burgundy bombers with super short shorts; and those white sneakers with neon red and yellow trimming that anchored a lion share of the show's exits.
HENRIK VIBSKOV: THE GREAT CHAIN OF SLEEPERS
Designer: Henrik Vibskov
All you need to know: Inspired by the fact that one of his performers in last season's show actually fell asleep for a few minutes during the performance (totally understandable as they had to lie down on their back for most of the show), for spring/summer 2018 Henrik Vibskov explored the concept of sleep from different angles: The different postures, the different locations, and the different consequences of too much or little sleep. With that, he presented a collection marked by models wearing under-eye masks and sporting taupe suits (appliquéd with motifs of people sleeping under colourful blankets, the same life-size motifs hanging upside down on metal brackets that filled the show venue) belted with canary yellow belts; kimono-style brocade robes in rich vermillion; blue-and-white striped shirts (seeing a lot of this on the runways including earlier today at Sacai) with sleeves stitched to the body or tied around the waist; red, blue and white horizontally striped grey suiting (always love a layered sartorial option); and suede desert boots with crisscross strapping in colour-blocked hues. Inventive, enchanting to witness, and always a fun fashion ride.
HERMÈS: HAVING A BALL
Designer: Véronique Nichanian
All you need to know: We all know that Hermès doesn't do 'fashion' — it's a craft house that prides itself on hand-workmanship — but increasingly, season after season, Hermès does active wear. With her finger on the menswear pulse, Nichanian delivered a collection that discerning men of today want to wear: Functional clothes and accessories that are lovingly and beautifully made. Let's talk favourites: That opening hooded zip-up blouson in red shiny Toilbright with a mini-herringbone pattern worn under a single breasted blazer; that rust red cotton poplin shirt with a graphic chaîne d'ancre print; that weightless straight leather blouson in chiffon crocodile (chiffon crocodile, people); and those Bolide Ball bags (one in pearl grey calfskin, the other in deep ocean blue calfskin) with contrast topstitching to make it look like a baseball. Brilliant. Clearly, for spring/summer 2018, #HermesHomme is having a ball.