Finally, Paris has completed the four-week tour of the world’s leading fashion capitals to catch the latest in styles. With the American and Britain sensibilities chalking out the biggest reigning trends for the coming season, it is the Italians and French that broaden our horizons to the various possibilities in shape, colour, fabric and style associated to that very same trend. 1970s, 1980s and androgyny were the dominant looks, while velvet and fur remained the most popular fabric, and patchwork, quilting and fringing were the details that caught our eye. The Fashion Team at FFT outlines the themes, silhouettes and details, which will rise to the top of retail in Fall ’15…
The fabric synonymous to Fall ’15 luxury is definitely velvet, the 70s influence was seen at both the fashion capitals. While Costume National used deep blue for their androgynous suiting, Luisa Beccaria took a feminine route by using decorative velvet trims with floral embroidery. Antonio Marras and Gucci subtly panelled rose coloured velvet on the sides of dresses and used midi skirts in pearlescent mink, whereas Emilio Pucci went all out with flared pants and fluted blazers. While the silhouettes in Milan were more traditional, Paris used the fabric innovatively on an array of luxurious garments. Both Valentino and Givenchy opted for black velvet dresses – long sleeved, panelled with lace and ruffles and high-necked at Valentino hinting at the Victorian era, Chloé sent out a midnight blue strapless dress which was embellished with miniature moons and Lanvin mixed his with leather, transforming a day look to an evening one.
Paris ranked high on the metallic radar as shiny fabrics were used in excess. H&M’s first look set the mood for the trend with the model in a silver jumpsuit, knee-length boots and silver coated helmet. Balmain didn’t shy away from the glitter as he incorporated shiny emerald green, gold and gunmetal with velvet in Lurex thread and fringes. Pleats were popular at Emanuel Ungaro and Loewe who presented knife pleats to show off their metalwork in silver, gold and blue that was strategically worked into pleated midi skirts and dresses worn with wide legged pants. Nicolas Ghesquière’s Louis Vuitton line was guided by technology-inspired metallic pant suits, Dries Van Noten and John Galliano boasted of shiny brocades, copper coloured sequins, Sonia Rykiel stepped it up with silver trousers and shimmering knit sweaters and dresses made an appearance on the Guy Laroche runway.
Pussy Bow Blouses
High necks and turtlenecks being a common trend on the runways, it was only fair to see pussy bow blouses chart a comeback. Most popularly seen in Milan, bow-necked shirts and delicate blouses added volume to the neckline, which wasn’t quite a trend at New York or London. Gucci pioneered the trend with lightweight flouncy bows peeping out from beneath fur coats and tank tops, in addition to the occasional floral brooches that set the mood. Roberto Cavalli’s take on the trend meant satin ties on delicate floral blouses and Emilio Pucci trimmed the bow of their diaphanous versions with ruffled edges. The look in all the collections remained the same, where the blouses were either teamed up with wide-legged trousers or midi-length skirts. Bold prints and floral patterns made the trend standout and jewel shades were seen on silk blouses that kept the focus on the neckline.
While all the four fashion capitals, unanimously, celebrated the 60s-70s era from Spring to Fall, Paris lived through a parallel decade of its own – the 80s! Isabel Marant’s vintage references included high-waisted skinny pants, oversized cropped jackets that had sharp sculpted shoulders (resembling power suits) and thick waist-tie belts, Carven’s vision was presented with high-waist pants paired with crackle print knits. Paco Robanne sent out model in baby doll dresses with front zipper details and tights underneath, Chanel matched their black quilted bomber jackets with leather pants; Sacai’s zip neck sweater dress with ribbed waist was a perfect 80s interpretation in big bishop sleeves. Another designer who used the exaggerated sleeves in their collection was Loewe where slouchy blouses stood out in leather and high necked dresses in lame, styled with roomy tailored pants constructed in grey wool and oversized brown aviators.
London and New York designers definitely employed quilting into their Fall collections but it was at Milan and Paris where the technique transgressed the barriers of outerwear to make a place for itself on inner separates like skirts, dresses and tops. Versace featured panels with contrast stitching – green on black, and Fendi played with volume – merging it with fur. The most noteworthy pieces, however, would include Ermanno Scervino’s who used quilting in a rather sporty collection, on pencil skirts and billowy sweatshirts designed in all-white that would increase and decrease in size according to the body fit and movement; Max Mara presented a more feminine version with his high-waisted pencil skirts in silver-blue diamond shaped quilting and a silk sweater attached to a quilted crop top; and Francesco Scognamiglio pushed the envelope with an intricate rose pattern on a peach coloured floor-length jacket coat.