Or so it seemed, anyway, in Giorgio Armani’s Privé show, a meditation on the sky in all its cloudy metamorphoses by way of — athcouture.
Which is to say: 50 shades of evening shorts. In watercolor silk, paired with elaborately swagged bustier tops or single-button jackets. In cumulus organza, with matching camisoles and anoraks speckled with sequins. In paillette-covered bloomers and sequined biker styles. Oh, and when there were no shorts, there were beaded sweats and crystal leggings.
Giorgio Armani Prive: Spring 2018
CreditRegis Colin Berthelier/Nowfashion
Also some lovely iridescent strapless soap-bubble dresses, understated trousers and executive jackets, and a pair of elegant gowns in gleaming silk. But shorts were the dominant theme. You can understand the idea: It’s a way to get out your legs for night and not be hampered by any practical concerns. The problem was that, on the runway, in front of such Armani-ites as Diane Kruger, Isabelle Huppert and Marion Cotillard, they read like a confusing subplot — albeit one with its own sense of direction, unlike Elie Saab’s ode to Paris in the 1920s by way of F. Scott and Zelda Fitzgerald, Ernest Hemingway and their cohort.
If “A Moveable Feast” had been rewritten in purple prose and bedazzled, with a flowing chiffon cape and a feather fillip for good measure, that is what it might look like.
Credit Maison Margiela
It was a different story, however, at Maison Margiela. There, in a kaleidoscopic, Kerouacian collection, John Galliano took the brand on the road via special holographic fabric developed in China that looked like oily black nylon when viewed with the naked eye, but that turned iridescent in the light of an iPhone’s flash; silvery oversize parka layers shadowing ornate brocade; and a long, spaghetti-strap gown veiled in lace and trapped under a PVC bustier.
There was an apple green cable coat crafted from molded rubber; a flouro pink slipdress encircled by acrylic swirls like Saturn’s rings; and a skirt made entirely of multicolor, clacking plastic tags. Not to mention denim, fishnet, rhinestones and Chantilly lace; past and techno present layered one atop the other in a masterful display of sartorial free association with a sneaker underpinning. Wearability went out the window and it didn’t matter one whit.
The effect was novel, in every sense of the word.