Sofia Achaval’s PFW Diary Part 1: Chanel, Miu Miu, Vuitton, Valentino, Givenchy, Balenciaga, And More!

by The Daily Front Row

The Daily Front Row‘s perennially chic correspondent Sofia Achaval de Montaigu is soaking up the glamour in Europe. Below, she fills us in on all the highlights and the unforgettable moments that took place in the fashion capital during the Paris Fashion Week Fall Winter ’22 schedule. 


The Grand Palais was dressed in tweed for Chanel’s show, attended by Jennie from Blackpink, So Joo Park, Georgia May Jagger, and Greta Fernandez.  The collection, which paid homage to the iconic Chanel suit while The Beatles played, bet big on both miniskirts and skirts long to the knee. We also saw jackets with many pockets and matching knitted sets and coats.
Virginie Viard allowed herself to flex some humor by adding mini flasks with chains to the looks, and rain boots with the double C logo were a clear nod to country life. The outfits came complete with caps, while wool stockings added some color as did trademark bandanas which were seen tied around the neck.


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Miu Miu

Sitting in the first row at Miu Miu on big, painted lounge chairs at the Palais d’Lena were Chiara Ferragni, Camila Coehlo, Camila Mendes, Ella Emhoff, and Vanessa Hudgens, all of whom enjoyed a show that had tiny pleated mini skirts as its shining star. Sweaters were combined with tweed creating young and rebellious looks, while exposed lingerie peeked out from beneath low-rise items and cropped t-shirts. Miuccia Prada went for a tennis-like proposal with this offering, where polo t-shirts stood out for the day while sparkles appeared on more evening styles. The designer created oversized trench coats and amazing leather jackets with fur in their insides to battle the cold and pretty embroidery on the outside. These coats were combined with high knee boots, creating a very cool biker style. She played with a mix of textures like knit, silks, leathers, and Prince of Wales checkered wool which resulted in super original combinations.


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Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton’s presentation at the Musée d’Orsay is the first time a fashion show has been held in the museum.  The line included a series of preppy outfits inspired by the adolescent style and the way the young people reutilize hand me downs. Models walked to the beat of Typhoon, by u24, enveloped in jackets and shirts over colorful dresses. We also saw actress Jung Ho-Yeon, who opened the show, wearing a gigantic yellow printed tie that contrasted with high-rise gray woolen trousers. Long party dresses came combined with athletic t-shirts, while others had sweaters tied at the waist. The brand also played with androgynous tailoring, often in oversized items made in colors like light blue, coral, and beige. Loafers, sneakers, and the must-have item of the season, high-knee boots, completed the looks.


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Giambattista Valli

Giambattista Valli presented his ’60s-inspired designs at the Museé d’Art Moderne. Celebrities like Vanessa Hudgens and Daisy Ridley said yes to the invitation, as did Emma Weymouth, Leonie Hanne, Ophelie Guillermand, Miss Fame, Bianca Brandolini d’Adda, Amel Bent, Ivy Getty, and Chriselle Lim. An emotive Max Richter piece was the chosen soundtrack to accompany the solemn walk of the models down the runway. It was a feminine and bold collection, combining floral prints in fluid gauze dresses with other minidresses in animal print, and voluminous skirts with rigid jackets styled with high patent leather boots. Glitter heels were another highlighted item, and they stood out the most combined with little white dresses and nylon stockings. Valli’s revolution journey concluded with a series of light and ethereal lace and tulle dresses with bows and ruffles.

Stella McCartney

Stella McCartney’s show contained a nod to artist Frank Stella, both by taking the eccentric shapes of his paintings and sculptures and choosing to show at the Pompidou Center. The models walked through long tubes that acted as the museum hallways with Paris’ best views in the background. Once every guest was in their place, a peace discourse from John F. Kennedy began to play as a preview of the show, which acted as a statement against the war. Once the speech was finished, the music began to play and the models entered the stage walking to the beat of songs like Give Peace a Chance, by John Lennon. The artist’s work was translated into the clothes in different ways: the tailored trousers had drawings from Stella’s painting “Spectralia,” which was also seen in a turtleneck dress. Elsewhere, the diagonal lines of his work “Serie V” were seen in the zig zag coat that opened the show—in sustainable faux fur, of course. The draped dresses were another great item in the collection, particularly a velvet one in pale pink with an irregular neckline.


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Givenchy presented its collection at La Defense Arena, where a big high level structure at the center acted as a runway. Over that same structure, benches were put out for celebrities like Naomi Harris, Anitta, Serena Williams, and Caro Daur. Once everyone was sitting, the black tarpaulins were removed to reveal a see-through runway with four enormous LED lights to illuminate the venue. The collection had an urban mark—baggy, low-rise pants were the collection’s big hit, especially one embroidered with pearls combined with a long-sleeve t-shirt, pointed shoes, and a pearl necklace which was present in several looks. Leather stayed present in all the collection ,particularly in boots and handbags, like the new Kenny bag. Finally, the blazers came in tight silhouettes for both men and women, and one of the most interesting ones was a sleeveless dark gray option that went all the way down up to the knees.


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Valentino’s show is always one of the most anticipated ones each season—on this occasion, Zendaya, who was dressed in pink from head to toe, caused a little commotion at the Carreau du Temple when she arrived as hundreds of fans had waited for hours to see her. Vanessa Hudgens, Maluma, and Lewis Hamilton were also present sitting in the first row. Pink was definitely the collection’s theme: the runway was pink as well as the walls and seats, which foreshadowed a little of what we were about to see. The collection only used two colors—pink and black—a bold choice for designer Pierpaolo Piccioli. Textures played a key role and towards the end, there were embroidered dresses with crystals that brought sparkle to the runway, while flower appliqués made the collection more romantic. Finally, feathers seen on an enormous coat were what set the trend for this season—and the same for extra high platform shoes. Kristen McMenamy had a stellar appearance closing the show, with pink makeup that framed her eyes and a gauze dress that floated over the runway with matching gloves.


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Balenciaga made its presentation for Fall at the Parc des Exposition, where a circular stage covered by snow acted as a runway, and surrounding it were the seats for the guests, which included big blue and yellow t-shirts in honor of Ukraine. Sitting in the first row were actresses Adele Exarchopoulos and Louise Bourgoin, singers Yseult and Aya Nakamura, and Alexa Demie. Kim Kardashian arrived wearing a yellow suit that made it seem like it was covered with tape with the Balenciaga logo, a handbag made of the same material and black sunglasses, and she was photographed by everyone.  To start the show, Demna’s voice was heard reading an Ukrainian poem, and afterwards, a piano melody called “The Ghosts of Lonely Destinies” began to play. The designer also read a letter explaining why it was so difficult to do the show, and the reason was that he lived a very similar experience as a child, where he was forced to flee his native country due to attacks like the ones happening in Ukraine. Under a storm of fake snow and wind that untidied the hair, men and women walked carrying big trash bags in their hands. Women wore long and fluid dresses with asymmetric sleeves, and latex catsuits with gloves, while men followed wearing big coats with hoodies and fishermen boots with heels. Black sunglasses in a cyclist style covered the face of the models, while the Balenciaga logo sealing tape was used as a belt in baggy trousers and coats. Extra large clothes are the brand’s trademark, and they were present once again: big hooded sweatshirts, blazers with big shoulder pads, and capes.


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The collection, directed by Vanhee Cybulski, included mini short trousers and leather one pieces in colors like blue, olive green, brown, and bordeaux. Following an athletic style, mini shorts were combined with riding boots and knitted socks underneath, allowing an overlapping and a combination of delicate and modern fabrics. Striped items stood out the most, created from the combination of fabrics that was seen in all of the collection. However, the look I liked the most was the last one: a mini skirt combined with a brown jacket and a green turtleneck with socks and loafers.


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Isabel Marant

Isabel Marant’s show took place at the Place du Palais Royal, where a sculpture made of metallic spheres was put in the center alongside a stage for Blonde Redhead, who played live. Models walked wearing motifs inspired by Persian carpets combined with colors like neon orange; a clear nod to the 2000s. Mini sparkly dresses with motocross-inspired high leather boots made for a the must-have outfit. There were also knitted wool dresses with no sleeves, creating sexy but casual looks. Oversized denim jackets with big pockets were combined with even more denim, like cargo and workman’s pants. Overalls were also a big hit in different combinations, like the one worn by Bella Hadid in black leather combined with a wide mohair sweater in beige.


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Guram Gvasalia presented his new project VTMNTS, a branch of Vetements. The chosen venue was an old and abandoned Monoprix at the Boulevard Raspail. With the cue given by birds singing on the speakers, the show began with the models going through the automatic doors and walking vigorously from one point to another. The 59 looks presented by the designer included tailoring items, a series of crossed jackets in different colors combined with turtlenecks and gloves in opposite colors. Extra large shoulders in coats were mixed with low-rise trousers that gave us a glimpse at the models’ underwear. In addition, some coats came in short puffer styles and bomber jackets in different color combos. My favorite looks were a jacket with a cutout on the chest, a crop top with a high neckline, and leather trousers combined with wide boots.


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Jonathan Anderson presented his collection for Loewe in a surrealist-style show, where part of the set included a brown carpet and big pumpkins created by artist Anthea Hamilton. The collection used a variety of materials, like latex dresses that let some parts of the body bare while being mixed with fur. Balloon 3D prints decorated a sleeveless black dress, while a trapeze shaped mini dress had a car in its hem and long languid dresses had enormous mouths on the chests. The footwear designs were also influenced by surrealism, and the same balloons we saw on the dress were put onto sandals, which were combined with fluid formal pants and white blouses with cutouts.


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