PFW: Louis Vuitton, breaking down frontiers chic
Outside, some 5,000 fans scrambled pre-show for views of the movie stars entering via I.M. Pei’s glass pyramid to see Louis Vuitton’s latest runway show - Michelle Williams, Lea Seydoux, Jennifer Connelly, Catherine Deneuve and Doona Bae.
Inside, the collection was presented on the four different levels of the Cour Marly. The clothes ranged across cultures and ethnicities, yet ultimately this was a powerful expression of Ghesquière’s whole aesthetic at LV, the meeting of active sports and high fashion.
African print patterns used as studs on suede bomber jackets; Comanche-like fur jerkins in muddy brown, black and white; 80s Russian acid-dyed denim jackets that were actually made of shearling. All about travel – with the cast shod in elastic Chelsea boots with athletic stripes and thick tractor tire soles.
In a philosophical mood, the designer explained: “Fashion has broken frontiers for a long time. So, I was trying to follow that idea. To think multi-culturally. When you think of fashion there are no boundaries, no frontiers. So, this was about the pure intention of travelling, which is Vuitton so much.”
“With all the issues of frontiers and immigration today, I wanted to show through fashion that immigration was always incredibly important for the evolution of all of us. Immigration is precious. Obviously, Paris is a city that always welcomed foreign designers in the past and in the present. We are in the Louvre and it is open to all peoples, and there should be no frontiers in the Louvre. So I wanted the collection to reflect all that,” said Ghesquière, standing beneath two enormous Grecian marble urns.
For fall 2017, he mingled folk and pastoral, yet the net result was very much urban. “We are still living in a civilized world, fortunately. And I think the more we don’t build boundaries the richer the world will be. Especially being here in the Louvre surrounded by the work of artists from many, many centuries. This is very precious and we need to all consider that. That’s the message of fashion. Because we all have to travel,” said Ghesquière whose collection also broke down barriers between day and eveningwear. Like his finale - a dramatic series of negligee dresses made of hardened patent leather mixed with lace and silk.
Finally, the show also underlined the power of luxury and specifically of LVMH to become the first brand to stage a show inside the Louvre.
“Magnificent, spectacular. We’re very proud to be here today with Louis Vuitton. The first marque to present inside our greatest museum,” smiled LVMH chairman Bernard Arnault backstage. Asked how his group had managed to gain access, Arnault winked, “Oh, that will have to be a secret between you and me.”
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