The best of Paris Men’s Fashion Week

Men’s fashion weeks around the world sometimes get a bad wrap as being mere fillers used to hold the fashion market between the ladies’ shows, which, to some extent, is true. With fashion being a predominantly female-focused industry, designers sometimes ended up creating menswear as a quick fix to engender male buyers’ interest in the brand. The result: lackluster and uninspired collections that really had nothing to do with the brand apart from carrying its name on the label. However, it seems as though many designers are finally understanding the power that a solid menswear line can have. Every season, it seems that more and more designers are popping up on the men’s week schedules, all with their own styles, twists, and innovative designs aimed at changing the face of menswear around the world.

Thom Browne

Photos: Vogue Runway

It looks as if the biggest trend this season is genderless clothing, the mixing and matching of men’s and women’s to create a new range of clothing that fit the term “humanwear” rather than menswear. At Thom Browne, the air was heavy with the idea of gender non-conformity. What was once seen as women’s clothing was quickly turned into a collection of genderless formal wear, at once crisp and heavily based on traditional tropes of masculinity, but also made soft and feminine through the use of tailoring and length. Thom Browne created a double image, almost like two images placed on top of one another. It isn’t either or, it’s about humanity and its similarities rather what makes what gender what.

Dior Homme

Photos: Vogue Runway

Now it shouldn’t come as a surprise that the spring collections are riddled with shorts. The whole point of a spring collection is to provide the customers with a seasonally appropriate outfit as the weather starts to warm up. However, it seems that, over the past few seasons, men’s shorts seemed to have been getting shorter and shorter. This is most likely due to the fact that menswear is only very rarely affected by the rules of masculinity and femininity. So it wasn’t in the least bit shocking to see designer Kris Van Ashe send out a flurry of cropped hems on the runway at Dior Homme. The beauty in this collection comes from the casualness of the shorts. Instead of creating a traditionally formal look for menswear, it creates a much more youthful and carefree silhouette.

Undercover

Photos: Vogue Runway

Jun Takahashi is no stranger to creating interesting and fiercely modern knitwear for his collections at Undercover. His post-apocalyptic ’90s cyberpunk collection is very relevant to what’s been happening over the last year with the massive influx of punk, grunge, and metal in menswear. But it isn’t just the heavy knits that make this collection something worth looking into. The outerwear is exceptionally well made and eye-catching. Oversized garments also seemed to be a big selling point throughout the collection. Exaggerated trapeze style coats walked alongside massive, overstretched flannels, and sweaters add to the “I don’t care, I wear what I want!” attitude of the collection.

Lucien Pellat-Finet

Photos: Vogue Runway

“How do you do preppy in 2017 without having to resort to beige cargo shorts and a candy coloured polo shirt?” That must have been the question designer Lucien Pellat-Finet must have been asking himself when he designed this fun take on the varsity jock’s go-to for his Spring 2018 collection. What’s interesting about this collection is the subtle yet completely recognizable throwback to the early ’90s jock — the inviting pastels as well as the velours and gauzy prints that scream varsity loungewear. Think Mark Paul Gosslear in Saved by the Bell, just far more high fashion. Another statement that jumps out here is one that was being made at many of the other collections. There was a real sense of soft femininity which may have either been brought on by the pastels, or the subtle change in fit. While most of the garments looked to be normal length, some were designed to fit a tad bit on the cropped size; an ode to womenswear for sure.

Juun.J

Photos: Vogue Runway

One of the biggest surprises to come out of Paris menswear week this season had to be designer Juun. J’s “formless and genderless” collection. The collection, which featured men’s and women’s clothing, was created with the ultimate goal of being interchangeable, the line between menswear and womenswear virtually indistinguishable. There were clear men and ladies influences. The hard pinstripe suiting and outerwear and the soft flowing shirting and caftan style dresses meshed and interchanged beautifully with one another. The collection showed its audiences that interchangeable unisex collections aren’t something of science fiction. They’re very now and seem to be a driving force behind the engine that is fashion. Take the army green hoodie paired with the long white caftan dress that walked the show. The entire look is completely wearable for both men and women without altering the look of the outfit itself.

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Resort 2018 trends you’ll be itching to try

Resort season is one of the most overlooked seasons in the fashion world. While fashion lovers around the world pine for spring, pre-fall, and fall collections, resort seems to fall behind in the eyes of the fashion community year in and year out. Luckily, this season, it seems that designers around the globe were bitten by a creative bug and produced some of the most successful and innovative resort collections to date. And the best thing about fresh and innovative design is that it pushes new trends forward, giving fashion aficionados around the world new inspiration that breathes life into their cold weather wardrobes.

The Printed Knee-High

Photo: Vogue Runway – Prada, Thom Browne, Gucci

Now, to some (I’m talking to you private and Catholic school girls), knee-high socks are the bane of humanity. They’re fussy, tend to always fall or roll down. and generally come in either black, navy, grey, or whatever ridiculous hue of maroon or mustard your school colours were. But don’t dismiss this posh staple just yet. This season’s knee-high stocking was more than just an accessory. Unlike their academic sisters, the knee-highs at high fashion houses Prada, Thom Browne, and Gucci came in printed patterns and interesting hues. Marrying the traditional sock with blogger-it-girl street style, they transformed the good old scholastic knee-high sock into one of the most in-demand accessories of the season.

Shades of (Navy) Blue

Photos: Vogue Runway – Pringle of Scotland, Delpozo, Versace

Resort and cruise collections are created with the sole purpose of giving high-fashion clientele luxurious options for their jet-set vacations. Instead of throwing on a gauzy sarong, resort collections offer up the option of opting for luxe ensembles made especially for the warm summer months, the yacht, or the country estate. And it seems as if the designers visited the same luxurious and exotic locations as their clients when they designed their collections. No colour seems to have popped up during resort season more than deep ocean blue and nowhere else was it used better than at Pringle of ScotlandDelpozo, and Versace. Rich and luxurious shades of indigo and navy dominated the design landscape, creating daydreams of the deep blue oceans that surround the world’s most heavenly rivieras.

Mix and Match Rock & Roll

Photos: Mugler, I’M Isola Marras, Acne Studio

Back in the days before rock music began influencing fashion, one could be called out or even ousted from social circles if they chose to sport a particular rock clique attire for the sake of style. It was a rock & roll travesty to merely wear a studded leather jacket for the sake of looking punk or a Slayer t-shirt because you wanted to look like a metalhead. Fast forward a few decades and the walls of music (and fashion) have come down. It’s no longer a sin to want to mix and match styles from the various eras and genres of rock music around the world. Designers took that notion into full account this season. At MuglerI’M Isola Marras, and Acne Studio, rock saw its various style meshed with one another to create a perfect cacophony of textures, layers, and colours. Punk mesh was mixed with grungy florals, while oversized blazers were paired with pop rock hoodies and eyeliner, and goth trenches were paired with clean Bowie-esque slacks, giving a new look to the traditional rock ensemble.

Green With Envy

Photos: Vogue Runway – Vivetta, Philosophy di Lorenzo Serafini, Vionnet

Emerald, pea green, evergreen, mint, lime, avocado: It doesn’t matter what your favourite colour of green is because you don’t have to choose this season. From the look of it, green seems to be the next big trend in colour right after navy blue. At VivettaPhilosophy di Lorenzo Serafini, and Vionnet, green played a vital role and added a fresh and crisp summer look to many of the garments in the collections. Taking the designers’ resort wear from regular vacation attire to bright and exotic à la Jennifer Lopez at the Grammy’s in Versace. And what woman wouldn’t want to have her own JLo moment?

Rock & Roll Florals

Photos: Vogue Runway – Badgley Mischka, Preen by Thorton Bergazzi, MSGM

Resort 2018 seemed to be the season of turning tradition on its head. At Badgley MischkaPreen by Thorton Bergazzi, and MSGM, florals were placed front and centre. But these weren’t your average florals. This season’s floral called for something a little out of the box. Instead of having the same old soft and summery pastel florals, the designers opted for prints that brought a little edge into the mix. Dark background colours added to the pops of crimson, teal, and gold that wound around one another to create florals that were a little more ’80s glam rock than garden party pristine. Making these prints the perfect mould breaker for a fashion lover who wants to go somewhere a little darker and a little harder with their pretty petaled prints.

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5 Designer Instagrams you should be following!

Since the birth of social media, designers have been looking to online communications as one of their most important tools in their arsenal for reaching a desired audience and clientele in real time. Unlike traditional runway and print formats, social media allows fans of the designer and brand to see collections, personal photos, and designer inspirations as they move through their day to day lives, creating the feeling of a more personal experience for the viewer. However, sometimes brands can, unfortunately, fall into the bad habit of using their social media accounts as a static means of showcasing their products and nothing else, taking away from the intimacy and personal connection that apps like Instagram can offer their fans. Luckily, we’ve found 5 designers whose Instagrams go way beyond the realm of merely showcasing their collection and give a glimpse into their lives for all of their fans and followers to admire and partake in. Here are the 5 designer Instagram accounts you need to be following!

Jacquemus

Photo: @jacquemus

If there’s one thing designer Simon Porte Jacquemus does best, is finding beauty in the everyday. With his signature triple posts, this French designer has found the perfect formula for keeping his Instagram account looking sharp, interesting, and personal. Rather than just showcasing images of his collections or celebrities who’ve worn his creations. Jacquemus instead posts triple images all relating to the same thing to achieve one of the most visually appealing Instagram accounts out there. These triptychs range anywhere from posts thanking magazines for using his work in their editorials, branded content, thanking celebrities for wearing his creations, editorial work, collection previews, and best of all, personal images from the designer’s everyday life. Which perfectly showcase the joie de vivre that the south of France (his home and muse) is so well known for.

Christopher Shannon

Photo: @christopher_shannon

Oh, honey! The shade, the shade of it all! Not many designers working in the world’s great fashion capitals are brave enough to call it like it is out of fear of creating negative press. But not Christopher Shannon. The menswear designer’s Instagram account is on one hand, beautiful to look at, chock full of bright images that showcase his creations. But on the other hand, Shannon’s Instagram account has an indiscreet sprinkling of posts where he posts little comments on the fashion industry. Most are up for interpretation because they tastefully comment on current situations without naming names, while some others speak directly about some of the shady and underhanded moments in fashion that we’re all thinking about, yet too scared to talk about. This makes Christopher Shannon’s Instagram the perfect little sip of industry tea that we’ve all been waiting for.

Jonathan Anderson

Photo: @jonathan.anderson

Loaded to the brim with personal influences and inspiration, fashion’s beloved Brit designer, Jonathan Anderson has managed to put together one of the most genuine and pretty to look at social media accounts on the internet to date. Boasting a plethora of soft black and white nude images, vintage photography, art, and work from his J.W Anderson and Loewe collections, Jonathan creates a sensual atmosphere that pulses with raw sexuality, art, and brand content that really is a pleasure to behold. Unfortunately, Mr Anderson rarely posts pictures of himself, but that’s all the more reason to follow his stunning account. You never know when a surprise selfie might pop and sweep you clean off of your feet.

Gareth Pugh

Photo: @garethpughstudio

Gareth Pugh is one of those designers that the fashion industry has sadly typecast. Since his designs are all relatively avant-garde and futuristic and push the limit on what the rest of the fashion industry considers fashion, Pugh has been labelled a “gothic” designer, which is all well and good. But here’s the interesting part. What Pugh presents on the runway is only a facet of who he is as a designer and as a person. A quick look at his Instagram page shows that the dark and serious side of him that’s seen on the London runway is merely one part of who he is as a person. Countless posts about everyday happy moments, life in London, and political protests paint a multifaceted picture of the brilliant designer. Recently, Pugh sent a collection down the runway during London Fashion week which accurately portrayed the current US government as a hellish fascist regime, creating conversation over whether or not designers should take the chance and protest current political climates around the world. But Pugh made it clear, his collection wasn’t merely a stunt to grab attention during fashion week. His feelings toward the US government extended to his personal life and countless of his posts on his Instagram are there to show it.

Mary Kate & Ashley Olson / The Row

Photo: @therow

Twin sisters Mary-Kate & Ashley Olson have had lives completely dominated by the media since their early childhoods and we would imagine that they’ve done everything they humanly can to break free from the image their childhood work has cast on them. Fast forward a decade later and the Olson sisters are now the driving force behind one of New York’s most innovative and well-respected fashion powerhouses. The Row represents artistic simplicity and raw power, all tied neatly into one beautifully designed package. And it’s safe to say that they’re Instagram page is one of the most beautifully curated profiles on the internet. With not a selfie in sight, the Olsons perfectly translate their quiet and put together private lives as designers into the digital world. With a mix of their work sprinkled about countless pieces of artwork and day to day inspiration, The Row’s Instagram page looks as if it could be printed out and hung in the MoMA itself.

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Queer Couture! 5 Designers Ready To Give You A Fashionable Pride Parade Extravaganza

The category is high fashion gay pride eleganza extravaganza! Pride month is in full swing, and with it come countless pride parades and marches around the world. Now, most pride attendees tend to dress for the weather rather than the event, so the visual representation of what it means to be queer in the modern world is unfortunately left to those walking in the parade rather than those strolling down the street. And even then, most mainstream brands don’t offer up outfit choices that have the gusto needed to catch the attention of parade onlookers. However, all is not lost! The world of high fashion has always been the playground of the queer and non-conformist artists of the world, especially over the past few seasons; and with so much negativity and backlash being aimed at the LGBTQ+ in recent months. It’s wonderful to see designers around the world taking aim at queer oppressors and calling for resistance through their designs. And what better place to showcase your truest self than at Pride? Even if your outfit doesn’t directly call for the heads of those who aim at taking your freedom, you can always represent your queerness with some of these fabulously extravagant ensembles straight from the runways of the world.

Moschino

Photos: Kirk Mckoy

Viva Las Gay-vas! Jeremy Scott has had a whirlwind career, having taken his namesake brand from alternative indie label to New York fashion powerhouse. Recently, Scott’s design endeavours have taken him from his home base in New York to Milan, where he now mans the helm at Moschino. For his Spring 2018 collection at the iconic Italian anti-fashion house, Scott delved into the glamorous and excessive world that is Las Vegas. Feather boa headdresses, pinstripe flames, and bold rainbows ran rampant throughout the collection. Taking what could have been an overdrawn Wayne Newton-Mr. Las Vegas trainwreck, into a fun and boisterous look into the more queer side of Sin City.

Ashish

Photos: Kim Weston Arnold

If you lean towards the more political when it comes to making a fashion statement. Ashish has you covered. For his Fall 2017 collection, designer Ashish Gupta created a collection based aimed at knocking those who feel it’s okay to judge and discriminate against minorities (especially queer minorities) off of their pedestals. The collection, which features gay-themed cartoons, rainbow flag patterns, and slogan shirts all focused on the resistance the gay community should be aiming at those who want nothing more than to make their lives a living hell. With slogans like “Nasty Woman, Fall In Love And Be More Tender, and Why Be Blue When You Can Be Gay?” Ashish’s Fall 2017 collection is sure to have the perfect war cry for any queer activists tastes.

Mary Katrantzou

Photos: Yannis Vlamos

Mary Katrantzou catapulted her career through the use of bold and graphic prints. So it came as no surprise when the British designer sent a wonderfully prim, yet cartoonishly sweet collection down the runway for her Fall 2017 season. The outfits, which were directly inspired by Disney’s Fantasia, which bombards its viewers a plethora of colour and fairytale imagery that would make even the most masc of men twirl with childhood excitement. What’s interesting about this collection isn’t that it directly references queer culture, instead, it conjures up imagery peaceful whimsy and fabulously glittery scenes that look like they came straight of a magical queer utopia.

Romance Was Born

Photos: Yannis Vlamos

The category is O.P.U.L.E.N.C.E! Imagine a world where disco never happened? Where the flash of the 70s and 80s played no role in influencing what modern queer culture would look like. Some of the greatest LGBTQ+ icons came from the eras of platform shoes and peroxide hair. SO why not wear something that pays homage to heydeys of Freddie Mercury, David Bowie, Madonna, and Annie Lennox? Your choices are simple. Feminine ruffles and bows, or fringe and sequins. (And trust me, nothing is more exciting than twirling in a fringe ensemble. Nothing)

Palomo

Photos: Shutterstock

Alejandro Gomez Palomo Of Palomo Spain started his brand with a clear motive in mind. To provide the modern gentleman with a chance of exploring the vast spectrum that is gender identity through clothing. Since his debut collection, it was clear that Palomo’s views on clothing and male dressing were really unlike anything that had been seen in the past. In his eyes, dresses, ruffles, high heels, feminine patterns, and soft gender bending silhouettes were no longer off limits. This comes at a perfect time when the notions of gender and what it is to be human are being examined by society. In Palomo’s world, a man can wear a wedding dress or a sheer blouse and feel as confident and comfortable as his female counterpart would feel in it. Since the brand and the collection really have no clear assigned gender, wearing one of Palomo’s creations to a pride event would so impactful and important to those who have struggled with the acceptance of their gender identities by others and it could even inspire those who wish to show the world their truest self. This collection, along with Pride month itself, are really is about expressing the beauty of the gender spectrum. They call for the acceptance and embracing of human fluidity and being able to chose who you want to be for the sake of you happiness.

Costumes Galore! A definitive list of some of the greatest movie wardrobes ever made

Movies and costume design go hand in hand. They work with one another to create a fantasy world that neither could create alone. It’s a partnership built on understanding and trust. Like a carefully orchestrated waltz, movies and costume stand together making sure that the landscape that one lays out is mirrored in beauty by the fantasy the other brings to life. Many of the films on this list have actually won their costume designers Academy Awards for best costume design, showing the world that it doesn’t just take beautiful cinematography, a beautiful score, or a very well written script to make an award-winning movie. It takes effort from everyone, including the costume department, to create a cinematic masterpiece.

Marie Antoinette

No article related to costume design in films would be complete without Sofia Coppola‘s modern retelling of the infamous queen of France’s tragic short life. Costume designer Milena Canonero won the Oscar for best costume design for her brilliant work. What sets Marie Antoinette‘s costumes apart from other period dramas is the modernization of the costumes. Even though the gowns were created to look traditionally rococo in appearance, the costumes themselves were based on colour schemes one would find on a delicious dessert tray. Every pastel colour imaginable is spun into frothy gowns trimmed with ostrich feathers and luxurious furs. Even the men’s ensembles were given a glamorously sugary appearance throughout the film.

The Curse of the Golden Flower

Chinese cinema has a plethora of stunning cinematic costumes. Movies like Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, House of Flying Daggers, Hero, and the Great Wall wall are all perfect examples of the lengths Chinese costume designers go to in order to create the perfect wardrobe for a cinematic epic. In The Curse of the Golden Flower, designer Yee Chung-Man took the opulence and over the top extravagance of the Tang Dynasty and weaved them into some of the most intricate and jaw-dropping costumes seen in a very long time. With the backdrop of Forbidden City and its brilliant jewel tone decor, the lavish gold gowns and costumes create the ultimate look of luxury for a movie hellbent on showing its viewers the beauty of colour in film.

Beauty and the Beast

Although this year’s theatrical release of Beauty and the Beast had everyone gawking at Emma Watson’s beautiful yellow gown, the real winner of the Beauty and the Beast costume battle has to be France’s 2014 venture into the iconic Disney fairytale. Designed by Pierre-Yves Gayraud, 2014’s Beauty and the Beast remake took the beauty of the surreal and fused it with traditional fairytales. Giving the movie its traditional fairytale period piece feel while injecting the movie with a fresh and modern ideas.

Memoirs of a Geisha

Colleen Atwood is a costume design heavyweight in Hollywood. Like many of her contemporaries, Colleen’s career is sprinkled with work that has garnered her attention and awards from different cinematic agencies around the world. However, her work on Memoirs of a Geisha proved to be her most fruitful venture thus far, earning her a best costume design Oscar. It took Atwood and her team a total of five months to create the various stunning hand painted kimonos seen throughout the film. One of the most interesting aspects of the film’s costumes is how it shows the characters’ transitions through life. Going from simple and dark, to completely extravagant and stunning.

Belle

Belle tells the story of Dido Belle Lindsay, the daughter of a British admiral who is taken from her life of poverty and given the life that any child born of someone high ranking in England would have. Unlike other period dramas on the list, this one deals heavily with racial inequality in aristocratic England. Now, most period dramas are already expected to have stunning wardrobes, but what sets Belle apart from other costume dramas is the detail that goes into the wardrobe’s “personalities.” While watching Belle for the first time you may not notice the subtle changes in wardrobe colour, but on second viewing, one might notice that costume designer Anushia Nieradzik changes the colour of the female characters’ clothing as their characters become more complex and opinionated. Giving the film an extra yet subtle layer for all costume aficionados to feast their eyes one.

Gone With The Wind

What’s an article on costume design without the sweeping Southern period piece that became recognized as one of the greatest novels ever written? Nothing. With the help of Hollywood golden age designer Walter Plunkett, Gone With The Wind set the standard for a romantic Hollywood blockbuster. The sweeping narrative mixed with larger than life characters had to be brought to life through a visual feast of some of the greatest costume work to have ever graced the silver screen. Now, some films may have beautiful costumes, but not many films have the power to etch a scene into your memories with just an image and a dress, yet Scarlet O’Hara’s iconic staircase scene is easily one of the most memorable and recognizable scenes in movie history.

The Dressmaker

Starring Kate Winslet as a talented designer who’s designed in every fashion capital around the world, The Dressmaker tells the story of a woman who comes back home to find the answer to a burning question that would set her free from her past. Set in the glamour of the 1950’s, The Dressmaker sets itself apart from other movies based on the time period by placing stunning gowns among the harsh and bare Australian outback. Allowing designers Marion Boyce and Margot Wilson to create the illusion of placing life into a landscape that is stark and unwilling to change into anything other than what is is.

Clueless

Anyone who’s ever referenced anything from the ’90s knows exactly the impact this movie had on future generations to come. Along with its cultural importance and trend making power, Clueless helped jumpstart the careers of Alicia Silverstone and Britney Murphy, making them household names overnight. But that isn’t the only reason why Clueless has become one of the most beloved and easily recognizable movies to date. It was also through designer Mona May’s astounding costuming for the movie that solidified its place in pop culture history. I mean, who could ever forget the iconic canary yellow skirt suit, the Calvin Klein mini dress, or the Alaia?

Moulin Rouge!

Easily heralded as one of the most visually stunning movies to have ever graced the silver screen, Moulin Rouge! was also a triumph for costume lovers around the world. Designers Catherine Martin and Angus Strathie took home the Academy Award for best costume design for their visually stunning work on Moulin Rouge! Mixing modern sexiness into old world Parisian cabaret, Moulin Rouge! presents a feast for the eyes in the form of costumes that pair perfectly with whatever musical number is playing on the screen at the time. Giving the film a heightened sense of pleasure and fantasy among an all too traditional and recognizable world.

Elizabeth: The Golden Age

Revered as the greatest triumph of modern day costume design, Elizabeth: The Golden Age’s is Alexandra Byrne’s an Oscar-winning cornucopia of opulence and excess. Everything about the grandiosity of Queen Elizabeth is presented beautifully through her vast wardrobe throughout the movie. Unlike other films on this list, Byrne’s costuming is so extensive and detailed that the clothing itself could stand alone and still command the attention of an entire room without question. Paired with Cate Blanchet’s extraordinary performance as England’s most legendary monarch fueled with a passion for her country and the tension brought on by an oncoming onslaught of Spanish warships. Elizabeth stands as the costume designer’s pearl draped and gold threaded magnum opus.

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