Most brands celebrate Resort/Cruise season with festive beachwear or luxury uniforms for leisure activities, but Gucci went a bit darker. As the millennial-approved designer du jour and an aesthetic rebel, designer Alessandro Michele sent models down the runway in looks exhibiting a twisted view of religion and death. Included were Memento Mori leggings, death masks made from pantyhose, a teddy bear with a fatal wound, tons of huge hair, and an enormous white dress that could either be for a wedding or a ghost (but probably not Gucci Ghost). Click through the slideshow to ponder what kind of statement the Italian house may have been making.
It was a new day at Bottega Veneta. After being helmed by Tomas Maier for 17 years, the fashion house debuted a new look under Daniel Lee for Fall 2019. Interestingly enough, Lee previously worked under Phoebe Philo at Celine—and his vision at Bottega may just fill the Old Celine void currently plaguing the fashion world. Lee’s debut collection was minimal without playing it safe—ranging from edgy leathers to feminine dresses. Quilted leather jackets and skirts kicked things off on a tougher note before a series of dresses with sculptural necklines drew attention to the collar bones. Sparkling out from the pack, mirrored shirt dresses added a bit of unexpected playfulness into the collection. Both feminine and edgy, it was the chic minimalism we’d been missing from Old Celine
With Wednesday Addams hair and a starting point of the startlingly separate themes of "romance and fear," Prada once again delved into a deft mix of pretty and serious. A black wool off-the-shoulder coat and utility jackets somehow mingle perfectly alongside floral lace, pastel furs, and sparkly pumps. The bags are oversized and the shapes are mostly tailored, for the Prada woman who knows she needs to dress the part for her day job—but hasn't given up on her day dreams.
In the realm of PR opportunities, a politician in a poppy coat wouldn't normally rank high on a brand's wish list. But Nancy Pelosi's cinematic power look—featuring a red MaxMara, floor length coat from a 2012 collection—was arguably the unintended PR score of the year. The Speaker of the House wore the coat in question in December to the White House for a discussion about the government shutdown with President Trump. She emerged from the West Wing, shades on, like the chic superhero with an influential vote we were wishing for.
MaxMara is reissuing the Glamis style she wore at the end of March to capitalize on the moment. But the brand's creative director Ian Griffiths channeled that powerful woman vibe for the fall 2019 collection. The Carine Roitfeld-styled runway came complete with colorful, monochromatic fur looks, mixed with more staid, but equally chic beige, layered ensembles. In other words, it's for the modern woman to look fantastic and eye-catching now, and equally so in a half decade from now—or more
All fashion savvy ladies know it's best to get dressed from the shoes, up. Ferragamo took that lesson to heart when it named its footwear designer Paul Andrew to creative director recently. That meant for this collection, the designer was inspired by a 1942 archive shoe with an emphasis on color. Think: color-blocked leather looks and an overall cool, but elegant collection complete with some of the best outerwear we've seen all season.
Philosophy di Lorenzo Serafini
It's a party over at Philosophy di Lorenzo Serafini and this one took place in the mid-90s—the heyday of the chic supers, from Kate to Christie. Today's supers, Bella included, walked in the mini skirts, jumpsuits, and one-shouldered dresses that are meant to dance in. It all felt like a welcome youthful surge in Milan.
Milan Fashion Week's Best Fall 2019 Runway Looks
GUCCI Cruize Collection 2019
Get ready for leather weather. Fall 2019 is shaping up to be one big Matrix reboot, except instead of your go-to black, think colorful leathers done in cognac, burgundy, and moss green. Tod's did it best with a series of buttery leather pieces from oversized jackets to skirt sets and pants. Leopard served as a palette cleanser in-between a range of fall color palettes, all challenging you to go beyond your worn-in black leather moto jacket
It's almost impossible to fathom the creative loss that will be felt throughout fashion following Karl Lagerfeld's passing. His final collection for Fendi honored that creativity—showing the line under his signature in lights and with Karl's sketches of the collection at each seat. The actual looks weren't about tribute, though, it was simply the latest from Karl for Fendi—suiting and furs, those signature "need them now" pieces like giant bows and logo tights and sheer, tulle skirting worn with oversized blazers. It's cool and current and already all over our Insta feeds—exactly as the designer would have wanted it
Alessandro Michele has been a breakout star in the fashion realm, but that hasn't made him immune to controversy. The designer has handled his missteps—specifically racially charged imagery on his runway, head-on, which could make the designer's inspiration of masks somewhat confounding. The show notes reference Hannah Arendt's 1958 book "The Human Condition." Specifically, Arendt "reminds us that we are persons when we choose the mask through which we appear on the world's stage...as a distinct and unique being among equals," says Arendt.
So perhaps, Michele is making a statement about the equality of humanity—how that plays into spiked collars, houndstooth suiting, Gucci logo knee pads, sweater dresses, and a '70s inspired tiger print coat remains a mystery. But Gucci's legions of fans will be pleased to see more, new Michele statements to invest in on today's runway.
Paul Surridge added a dose of Cavalli boldness by way of technicolor tiger stripes mixed with his own more minimal, structural approach. There was simple suiting and a fantastic black leather coat, alongside poppy hues of yellow and green. It's a new take on Cavalli two years into the creative director's tenure and we're into this fresh direction.
Versace is the ultra-glam label that the all the model girls are wearing when they hit the town. Bella Hadid recently appeared in the campaign for Versace x Kith. In other words, Versace has its eye on the young ones, and the young ones have their eye on the '90s. The theme at today's collection was supposedly "grunge" but through a very Versace lens. Think: those signature Versace prints, knit layers, slip dresses and corsets, and a subtle glam thrift store vibe. Grunge by Donatella sounds like just what the young Millenials ordered.
Best Looks from Paris Fashion Week: Fall 2019
A MOMENT OF SILENCE, A STANDING OVATION AND PLENTY OF TEARS FOR KARL LAGERFELD'S FINAL CHANEL COLLECTION
Karl Lagerfeld’s final collection for Chanel, designed before he passed away last month, walked at the Grand Palais today on a bed of faux snow, next to trees and charming chalet houses against a backdrop of snow capped mountains.
A moment of silence and a recording of the posthumous designer speaking before the collection walked served as tribute—but as a drawing of Coo Chanel and Karl Largerfeld sketched by the late designer at each seat read, “The Beat Goes On.”
Chanel is a joyous brand and this collection brought that joy,
après-ski style. The Chanel woman is a true traveler, who requires a wardrobe for each of her fabulous destinations, including the world's chicest mountaintops. Whether that be Gstaad, Aspen, or Hokkaido, she’s certainly covered in puffer jackets, black and white tweeds, white suiting, a furry snow cape, fair isle sweaters and snow boots, bien sur.
Penelope Cruz helped close the show in an ice queen-worthy mini dress before models walked to0 "We Could Be Heroes" by David Bowie, the same song which closed Karl's last show for Fendi in Milan. Karl will always be missed but he was most certainly still felt today.
The Centre Pompidou, Paris' epicenter of modern and contemporary art, served as a primary source of inspiration for Nicolas Ghesquière this season, as did "Culture" more loosely, which he describes as "what we see, what we accept,
what we learn. What’s left to us..."
And rather than look to the oh-so-haute Louvre, the designer chose a more urban, modern, downtown approach. As his show notes began, "perceptions shift..." And shift they did, although Ghesquière's girl is still the tough, mini-skirt-wearing girl she has been for seasons.
For Fall 2019, the designer paired bold shoulders, ruffles, sparkles, and other fanciful elements with grungier street elements for a mix that feels resemblant of the streets. He also played with a piece of every bold tone for a reason—"Green is water, blue is air, yellow is electricity. Red is human."—but used them sporadically. For the most part, this is still the cool-kid Vuitton girl you've come to know and love; she's just expanding her horizons.
No shock here: Demna Gvasalia is soldiering on when it comes to reinterpreting street style. His reign at Balenciaga has yielded a laundry list of It-items: from the ugly-yet-cool sneaker trend he catapulted to the forefront of It-girl dressing trends, to the fashion girl puffer-coat, and his statement sock boots and "knife pumps," complete with super-severe, almost witchy pointed toes.
This season, Gvasalia expanded on his ethos of designing for the woman who wears what's in her closet, rather than collecting items for posterity, and reinterpreted classic Balenciaga pieces to add some more must-haves to his customers shopping lists. Cristobal Balenciaga's signature structural elements were at play in strong shoulders, super-high collars, and sculptural coats, but this time they were paired with denim. Fall 2019 had a little extra polish for the designer, but it seems Gvasalia's plan is to continue to design for the woman on the street, and the loyal customers he know can't get enough of his riffs on everyday wear. Even his eveningwear was composed in utilitarian shapes, like an all-encrusted shift gown shown on Stella Tennant.
Television screens surrounded the Miu Miu runway, looping old school VHS imagery including such disparate themes as Mariah Carey, random nudes, cats, and blooming flowers. The whole look was very mid-‘90s MTV. The clothing vibed on that idea a bit but not too literally with a cool, young mix—camo and shearling jackets, some pop floral slim maxi skirts, layered leather mini skirts, and sheer puff sleeve mini dresses. A black velvet cape and anorak cape-jacket hybrids were standouts. At the end of the show, models walked to Dolly Patton’s rendition of "Stairway to Heaven," further proof that sometimes it’s the unexpected pairings that really soar.
Hermès is all about heritage and heirlooms; classics that transition from generation to generation and withstand the test of time. What's old is new again, timelessness, classicism, and heirlooms are what's considered "in" at Hermès. The concept of It-pieces that you purchase one season to show off this year's trends only to discard them the next need not apply here.And so it's no surprise that Hermès designer Nadège Vanhee-Cybulski chose to show countless new classics: from the brand's next must-have boots, to leather pieces that move and feel like your favorite pair of tailored trousers.
However, just because this label is classic doesn't mean it's free from nuance: puffer coats and hot pants (yes, hot pants), the latter worn with tights and sexy heels, were on offer as well. This is classic, with a modern twist, where t-shirts take the place of silk scarves, and puffer coats replace more formal takes on outerwear.
For Fall, Sarah Burton looked back to her hometown in Northern England for inspiration. In her show notes, the creative director revealed she brought her team to the countryside and mill towns in which she grew up, leading to a collection inspired by “the bolts of cloth we saw woven both by man and machine.”
The end result was a garden party of new sorts—one that traded in traditional floral print frocks for futuristic, couture-like roses that came to life in new form. There were 3-D florals that blossomed as the exaggerated shoulders of an ‘80s-inspired jacket and a series of belted pouf dresses. A range of metallic looks—from jewel-encrusted suiting to chain evening wear—leaned towards the futuristic, machine-driven aspect of the collection. All together, it was a stunning contrast of old meets new, delicate meets tough, and nature meets technology
Despite never working for a major fashion house, Rushemy Botter and Lisi Herrebrugh were appointed the new creative directors at Nina Ricci back in August. Making their appointment even more interesting, the design duo, who helm menswear label Botter together, have also never designed womenswear. So when it came time for their debut at one of the most feminine fashion houses in Paris, Botter and Herrebrugh looked to a new side of romanticism and femininity.
What started as a parade of mostly neutral looks, ended with a splash of colorful designs ranging from cobalt blue to bright pink and orange. There was a mix of tailored suiting, gauzy sheer organza, dresses, and boxy blazers. Oversized cloche hats topped off most of the looks, creating for a dramatic effect that tied together both the masculinity and femininity of the designs. Though it wasn’t quite as elegant and romantic as Ricci’s signature aesthetic is known to be, it was perhaps a sneak-peek into a new era of elegance and romance for the house.
Giambattista Valli has long mastered the art of swoon-worthy dresses—and his Fall 2019 collection was no exception. A masculine-meets-feminine juxtaposition set the tone for the collection, with boxy tailored suits sprinkled in-between flouncy floral dresses and gowns. It was the range of colorful print dresses accessorized with floral neck scarves and fanciful feathered shoes that stood out most, however. Puffed sleeves and strong shoulders served as the main focal points, echoing the ongoing ‘80s revival that doesn’t appear to be slowing down anytime soon—much to our delight.
Studs, sheer, and patent leather: the Balmain army came out in full force today in Paris. For Fall 2019, Olivier Rousteing reimagined some of the house’s signatures, like deconstructed tweed suiting, and doused them with clear PVC panels, denim, and cut-out details. In a collection of mostly black and white, a series of pastel looks—ranging from tailored suiting to ultra-feminine skirts—made for an unexpected color palette. But it was the studs and leather that stood out as the most impactful. Rousteing weaved patent leather into a series of evening looks from cocktail dresses to a dramatic polka dot cape that was the real star of the show.
Clare Waight-Keller called this collection "Winter of Eden" shown on a runway set under eerily lit bare branches. Candy apples were served on the way in to reinforce the Adam and Eve idea. The designer was going for a new "scultped feel" according to the show notes. That translated onto some truly standout coats and blazers with bold shoulders and belted waists in camel or subtle plaids. More surprising from the designer were high necked floral dresses, but those read as the thinking woman's floral—for the more serious romantics among us.
A peach taffeta mini dress has an '80s vibe but with a modern, less literal approach than we've been seeing elsewhere this season. The collection ended with a series of gowns, including an embroidered strapless black dress with sculpted hips—again, cool and modern and not quite like anything else on the runway. Starting at the actual beginning of time is quite a place to start, but Waight-Keller was clearly up to the task
Though he may be most-known for his work at Chanel and Fendi, Karl Lagerfeld also notably helmed Chloé from the 1960s through the 1990s. At its show today, the French fashion house paid homage to the late designer with heartfelt notes and photos left on seats. “Chloe pays deepest respect and gratitude to Karl Lagerfeld for the incalculable genius he brought to us over his 25 years with the house,” the card read. Through the Fall 2019 collection, it was clear that Lagerfeld’s vision for Chloé still remains today. Creative director Natacha Ramsay-Levi looked to the ‘70s—a decade which Lagerfeld helped define—through a series of feminine dresses, denim jumpsuits, shearling outerwear, and clear tortoise aviators. From floral print dresses to tailored separates and the return of bootcut denim, the Chloé woman has options for fall. All of them, both strongly tailored and effortlessly chic, are good ones
It seems the whole world is in love with Pierpaolo Piccioli right now. It's hard to argue with that notion when you see how much beauty he's putting out into it. Not to sound heavy-handed. This show was truly about love—complete with love poems by Greta Bellamacina, Mustafa The Poet, Robert Montgomery, and Ysra Daley-Ward at each seat and a Robert Montgomery Ghost light installation that read “The people you love become ghosts inside you and like this you keep them alive" looming over the runway in block letters.
Some lines of those poems ended up on airy gowns and the arms of jackets. Other love stories in the collection were less literal—a smart black skirt suit that shows how much Piccioli loves women. Because that is one great suit. A playful green cacoon jacket paired with a wide brim hat was printed with a tattoo-inspired image of a 19th-century sculpture of kissing lovers with roses, part of a collaboration with Jun Takahashi of Undercover. An off the shoulder black gown is sleek and feminine, there for one Valentino woman, while gowns done up in layers of sheer tulle in pinks or nudes or layered pastels are for that ultra-feminine Valentino woman. All are beautiful in a way that's undeniable, triggering a standing ovation after the final walk, set to the emotional "I'm Kissing You" by Des'ree. Some might just call it love
Opting for a different take on the ‘70s, Paco Rabanne’s Julien Dossena fused the glam rock look of the decade with contrasting feminine floral prints. Standouts included the clashing of patterns—ranging from mixed florals to animal prints—that felt fresh through unexpected layering and styling. Veering into glam rock territory, a series of metallic chain dresses, skirts, and accessories—which you'll likely see all over Instagram next season—sparkled from the pack. Though designers continue to look back to the 1970s over and over again, Dossena managed to do so in a way that felt new again
Best Looks from London Fashion Week: Fall 2019