The Daily Front Row‘s Paris correspondent, Sofia Achaval de Montaigu, attends the shows at Fall 2020 Paris Fashion Week and lets us know what is going down on the biggest runways in the City of Lights.
Day 4: February 28, 2020
Maison de l’Unesco was the chosen stage for Loewe’s presentation by Jonathan Anderson. Among his guests in the front row were Jennifer Coolidge, Tessa Thompson, and Carolyn Murphy, who sat on white stands over a floor with black and white squares and some golden touches. Anderson worked with artist Takuro Kuwata intervening clothes and accessories such as handbags with ceramic pieces. Moreover, the collection stood out because of the richness of the fabrics: silk satin appeared in dresses with dreamy sparkly textures, leather made its print on some clothes while wool said yes to coats.
Celine’s show began when a curtain fell to the floor revealing scaffolding at the end of the stage that lit up, forming the Celine logo. A second later, the first model arrived via a conveyer belt on the side of the stage, to Sofia Bolt’s “Get Out of My Head.” The unisex collection proposed leather pants with wide cuffs, sunglasses in a John Lennon style, and pointy boots for men, as well as velvet suits with blouses and animal printed caftans. The women’s line was inspired in the typical rockstar, like Mick Jagger, and had their hair loose and with a fringe and dark eyes. Long dresses to the knee were combined with super high platform sandals with semi sheer socks, while velvet pants matched with coats.
Olivier Theyskens presented his new collection at one of the most beautiful hotels in Paris, the Hôtel Bourrienne. The collection ranged between a gothic style and a super sensual and feminine proposal. Models had dark eyed make up and the hair with gel. As for the collection, voluminous shoulders stood out in dresses and jackets and blazers were seen in different lengths. But without a doubt, the main items were the sheer corsets. The color palette was neutral, and the main attraction were the different textures used. Dresses long to the floor caught the audiences’s attention not only in their long sleeved variation but also the sleeveless ones. Masculine suits were also one of my favorite looks.
Day 5: February 29, 2020
The collection was a mixture of punk, Victorian, and royal fashion with a dramatic effect under the sparkling crystal chandeliers of the historic Hotel se Ville. A singer brought the music of the show with phrases like “The year is 2020. A revolution is happening. People are fighting back,” which added more value to the designs made in eco-friendly and sustainable fabrics. As always, Kronthaler used Westwood’s trademark drapes and period styles but added an urban, sporty touch. There were big veils, as well as a crystal crown and an Elizabethan necklace made of cloves of garlic. The star of the show was the wedding dress worn by Bella Hadid. The design featured white lace, a dragging tail, and a leather belt by the waist that had a dagger. It was inspired by the Victorian ages, with huge sleeves that gave the outfit a period look.
Elie Saab’s show took place at the Palais de Tokyo, where the muse of the brand, Nieves Alvarez, sat first row alongside Olivia Palermo and Angela Basset. The line, inspired by Andalusia, was full of big ruffles, lace, bow ties, and wide tulle skirts. A black and white theme was present in the show, only interrupted by some green and red looks. There were also some embroidered details in gold that made a black coat shine, or accentuated a black velvet dress with a side cut up to the thighs, and a dramatic cut suit that let us see a sheer lace blouse beneath. Models had their faces covered by a delicate black veils while others had big sunglasses as they walked down the runway with some Spanish music.
The day ended at the Garde Républicaine, where we saw Hermès’ new collection. The runway was full of white bars with colored stripes that went from the floor to the roof, imitating the obstacle bars typical of equestrian jump competitions. Designer Nadège Vanhee-Cybulski also paid tribute to Jean-Charles de Castelbajac, who was sitting first row, through the use of primary colors and the sporty style. The colors were seen in monochromatic polo dresses, thin sweaters with high necklines, the folding a of a pleated dress, and even a sweater with a blue sleeve, another one yellow and the back in red. Coats oscillated between gabardine raincoats, parkas, and puffy jackets. Details that didn’t go unnoticed: detachable hoods, waterproof leather, and extra large pockets. All in all, it was a collection that merged sports and elegance in a perfect way.
Day 6: March 1, 2020
Water flooded the runway and even filtered through the first rows of seats. Meanwhile, a LED screen on the ceiling projected images of terrifying electric storms, creating the show’s “natural disaster” theme. Creative director Demna Gvadslia proposed 105 looks with tailoring that highlighted the shoulders in a pointy fashion. There were tight dresses with gloves in red, blue, and green as well as tight clothing with an athletic inspiration. As for accessories, the classic Balenciaga bag was recreated as “Neo Classic.”
Valentino presented its collection at Les Invalides, where Issey Miyake waited as you arrived. The artist created an installation on a big white paper sheet over the wall. The show began with an orchestra playing live, and as the first model walked the runway. We got to enjoy a collection that included leather bras to dresses with sheer ruffles. Pierpaolo Piccioli created a series of all-black looks, some with sequins and others more delicate in lace. There were some touches of red in the accessories, from a ruffled bag to long gloves. But the designer finished the show with more subtle hues, even in sparkly dresses.
The Hippodrome Paris Longchamp was set as a French movie in the nouvelle vague style: we went through a concrete tunnel towards the red seats where celebrities like Barbie Ferreira, Maisie Williams, and Naomi Scott sat. The set’s mystery was created with lights that followed the models walk on the runway. The collection had a series of suits, rigid dresses that transformed into dramatic capes, and luxurious faux fur coats. Feathers became the center of attention — small and delicate tufts were applied to tops, long skirts, and fancy tunics tight at the waist. The most laid-back proposal came hand in hand with large juvenile sweaters, combined with high waisted loose pants. Finally, the extra large gloves were an accessory of big importance, and were worn outside coats and jackets.