Rick Owens

Show notes at Rick Owens refer to the ancient Nazca geoglyphs in Peru, which Owens has used as a starting point and title for the collection. Taking from these geoglyphs 'a weird balance of sophistication and crudeness', he then translated the idea into strict lean lines that elongated the body, together with heavily textured fabrics like raw silk or technical textured georgette. Although it may not at first appear so ( Owens's shows are high art) this was a very tailored collection, as for Owens the 'suit' was a structured slim one button jacket with an ankle length 'robe' beneath, which came in shades of vanilla, milk, pearl or dark dust

Photography: Jason Lloyd-Evans

Rick Owens

Photography: Jason Lloyd-Evans

Rick Owens

Rick Owens

Rick Owens

Louis Vuitton

Bravo Kim Jones, Louis Vuitton's recently hired men's style director. His debut collection today ticked all the right boxes - great tailoring, sportswear, bags and footwear. It was a perfect take on preppy and elegant chic just as all things French should be, and with just enough 'fashion' for that all-important editorial edge that keeps the whole system moving forward. Travel - that essential 'language and lineage' of Louis Vuitton's - was the starting point for what Jones described as 'the idea of a personal journey', the 'notion of a coming-of-age through exploration and travel'. Standouts were the preppy athletic-inspired sportswear like baseball jackets, parkas, blousons and shorts, while over in the accessories department, it was the tobacco-coloured shopper and doctor bags and the red Masai Damier blankets and scarves - the combination of red and blue was electric

Photography: Jason Lloyd-Evans

Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton

Dries Van Noten

Dries Van Noten is the master of print and decoration. For Spring, he turned his attention to the tape normally used to thermally-bond fabric together. Placing this on the outside instead of hidden away in a garment's interior, the designer found a new graphic language and at the same time defined the garment's structure. Some of this bonding was real (over seams and around zippered pockets) and in other cases faux - when emulated in cotton or grosgrain ribbon affixed into place. Whether tonal in black and navy or in contrasting colours, there was a notable and pleasing change in texture. And while the combining of tailoring and sportswear is not really news, Van Noten showed that there is plenty of mileage in it, as he fused the sportswear from motorsport, horse racing and equipage with the formal dress codes of city life

Photography: Jason Lloyd-Evans

Dries Van Noten

Dries Van Noten

Dries Van Noten

Dries Van Noten

Junya Watanabe

With a lawn as a runway, a hedge as a backdrop, George Harrison for a soundtrack and some welcome sunshine as a bonus, Junya Watanabe charmed us with his collection, which was developed around his update of the humble dungaree in the garden of the Institut National de Jeunes Sourds. Rural ideas were further developed with vintage denim (in this case it was printed on top of cotton), checked patches, waxy jackets and boots in leather that resembled Wellington boots. His country boys scrubbed up nicely for dinner, when evening looks (white shirt and black dungarees) formed the finale. Watanabe has a passion for re-working iconic male wardrobe items and collaborating with leading producers such as Levi's, Brooks Brothers and Duvetica for jackets. This does of course make the pieces unique and rather splendid (entire garments are often taken apart and re-engineered in Japan), but that does also mean a pair of his fine dungarees could likely cost more than a small farm

Photography: Jason Lloyd-Evans

Junya Watanabe

Junya Watanabe

Junya Watanabe

Junya Watanabe

Junya Watanabe

Junya Watanabe

Comme des Garçons

Rei Kawakubo showed a new way of tailoring - one for the more adventurous or 'rebellious'. That included a rather violent pink number - a polyester pea coat with slashed open pockets exposing its well-tailored interior – tough looking garment-dyed lace jackets lined in poplin and Prince of Wales checked suits with ruffles (borrowed from a shirt bib) running up sleeves or across the thighs. Tailored jackets were sewn up with a double row of industrial-strength thread usually saved for jeans or uniforms, creating a decidedly less precious and more casual garment. Other traditional male staple finishes like houndstooth or checks were printed over with waxy red checks, while a banker's shirt was cut so long it could be mistaken for a dress. Topping the whole thing off were extraordinary crowns by Christian Astuguevieille

Photography: Ilker Akyol

Comme des Garçons

Photography: Ilker Akyol

Yves Saint Laurent

Stefano Pilati proposed a tightly-edited colour palate of navy, black, white and khaki - with each of these staple menswear colours often sent out as a complete look. That meant the focus was on the shapes - engineered through tailoring with strong shoulders and pleated and tapered trousers - and fabrics, which included cotton gabardine, habutai and washed silk, as well specially developed jacquards that the house is now known for. Within Pilati's work, references to sport usually appear, and in this case it was the rubberised formal footwear, and mesh-like tank-tops slipped in underneath blazers and perforated cloth. Standouts included a new take on the iconic YSL safari suit - the signature lacing really does belongs to this house

Photography: Jason Lloyd-Evans

Yves Saint Laurent

Yves Saint Laurent

Yves Saint Laurent

Yves Saint Laurent

Maison Martin Margiela

Starting things off with a short film and following through with a catwalk show, Maison Martin Margiela's show format will satisfy both the digital media and traditional print at the same time. The film - shot against a dark background - had models' faces lost amongst the shadows, which allowed more focus on the clothes and in particular the all-important details, like 30cm-long zips on the front of blousons and silver reflective T-Shirts. With each look numbered like a look book on the side of the screen, models walked and then jogged (to introduce sportswear) or smoked (to introduce evening) as the camera zoomed in and around accessories and detailing. Standout themes included stripes and checks - first peeking through gauzy knits, then hinted at inside trousers (printed on the pocket bags beneath white cotton) - and finally through entire garments, where the graphic print was always on the inside

Photography: Jason Lloyd-Evans

Maison Martin Margiela

Maison Martin Margiela

photography courtesy of Maison Martin Margiela

Maison Martin Margiela

photography courtesy of Maison Martin Margiela

Maison Martin Margiela

photography courtesy of Maison Martin Margiela

Maison Martin Margiela

photography courtesy of Maison Martin Margiela

Dior Homme

A full-scale reproduction of the Dior salon in Avenue Montaigne - fabricated in grey gauze with floating white boiserie paneling and built into the Tennis Club de Paris - and a simple message 'Less and More', was the setting for the Dior Homme show. Kris Van Assche continued with the themes he showed for winter -clean, almost detail free garments (the 'less') and the volumes he is now known for (one assumes the 'more'). With an almost monochromatic palate of chalk, black and a very fresh khaki-cum-mustard shade which hit it off particularly well with ecru, the message seemed mainly focused on the silhouette. Buttons were replaced with ring pulls or hidden beneath facings, socks were banished - even when the footwear was boots - and the pants were cropped short enough for a fleeting flash of flesh

Photography: Jason Lloyd-Evans

Dior Homme

Dior Homme

Dior Homme

Dior Homme

Hermès

What made this Hermès collection so right? For one it was the colour palate, which came in navy, hussar blue and a terrific clay - a warm grey that worked as a staple neutral, flashes of ochre (so right for now) and a terracotta tile shade. Secondly, it was the fabrics. Yes the lambskin, alligator and water snake and the rest of the skins were as exquisite as ever, but this time it was cotton that stood out. Coming in the form of twill, serge, canvas, pique, double cotton poplin and solid seersucker - both all cotton and mixed with silk - they had great visible texture, and took on the intense colour exceptionally well. Hermès don't need the runway to sell their accessories, so with the exception of a few scarves, a shoe and a simple but splendid sandal, Veronique Nichanian illustrated her conviction that simplicity is what works best for men. She also has a knack of making casual feel smart but easy - just how good can a navy crepe wool turtleneck, hussar blue cotton seersucker shorts and raw cut leather sandal look on a guy

Photography: Jason Lloyd-Evans

Hermès

Hermès

Hermès

Hermès

Raf Simons

When it came to this particular collection, Raf Simons wanted to make a very strong statement about who Raf Simons is (the brand not the man) and what it stands for. It's very clear from the referencing of traditional menswear - in this case the chain, the stripe, the check or plaid and intarsia knitwear - what it means to him. The whole thing was deliberately clean, and we clocked things like the relatively straightforward trouser, coat and top (nothing gimmicky like a sandal that transforms into a boot). But this isn't to say that Simons didn't play around with the archetypes - take for instance the classical Derby shoes which had chunky chains on top of the welt, or the checks that were cut on the bias and slashed and re-inserted with contrasting directions - they may be traditional in their origins but you can be sure they had been given a modern twist. Simons has become one of the most original and competent colourists (you only have to look around to see how many people are wearing the acid bright colours he introduced at Jil Sander this summer), so it's no surprise that alongside plenty of black, what stood out was the mix of white, orange, lemon and lilac

Photography: Jason Lloyd-Evans

Raf Simons

Raf Simons

Raf Simons

Raf Simons

Lanvin

Alber Elbaz and Lucas Ossendrijver always begin a Men's season at Lanvin with fabric, silhouette and colour - their aim is for an evolution rather than a revolution, 'as revolutions don't last'. The brand is know for a certain sense of 'fragility' that was introduced a few years back, but Ossendrijver used this collection to make a statement that it was time to go back to masculine, 'giving strength back to men'. Starting with the idea of strong shoulders alluding to strength, the tailored shoulder was raised by stitching the seams outside. Likewise, there was plenty of leather, but not as you know it - the first look, (think airline security guard) had leather pressed all over the finished garment, hinting at the construction beneath - a technique he described as 'insane'. The collection stood out not just for its superb colour palette, the emphasis house codes like raw edges, exposed zips and the fragile/masculine tension, but also because it offers options for men of different tastes, ages and body types

Photography: Jason Lloyd-Evans

Lanvin

Lanvin

Lanvin

Lanvin

Mr Roland Mouret

Roland Mouret explained at his first ever men's show that for Mr - his fledgling menswear line - 'everything for me comes from the shoulders, as opposed to womenswear which for me starts from the waist'. This was a very elegant line which had a military-style smartness to it, with a strong shoulder 'that defines the man' working in balance with a wider two-pleat trouser. The 'special colours' like dusty pink, chrome yellow, chamois and petrol were inspired in part by Robert Mitchum in Cape Fear - according to Mouret, the colour of your clothing can change the way you are perceived (in this case, less 'terrorist' and more 'tourist')

Photography: Jason Lloyd-Evans

Mr Roland Mouret

Mr Roland Mouret

Mr Roland Mouret

Mr Roland Mouret

Paul Smith

According to Paul Smith, his collection had no theme and no references - instead, it was all about adding to your existing wardrobe. Colour was key, and what ensued was a sophisticated palate that was not only a reaction against the primary colour around, but also because the ensuing shades were 'more timeless'. Smith's technique was to mix them up with colour-blocking - using up to five different shades on the one look (sometimes just a one-piece), all cut from different cloth. Layering was another strong theme, with one jacket as light as a shirt over another, or a collarless and sleeveless gilet with a blouson back over a blazer. Paris has been a season of bare ankles with lace-up shoes and boots - if this catches on the hosiery industry will have a bad season

Photography: Jason Lloyd-Evans

Paul Smith

Paul Smith

Paul Smith

Paul Smith

Thom Browne

They may have been described as aprons, robes or 'elongated' shirts but essentially, Paris has been full of gender-bending garments this season. Leave it to Thom Browne the absolute showman to take things just about as far as possible for the penultimate show. Necklaces of pearls, bugle-beaded fringing, black sequinned floor-length gowns, bridal veils and lampshade head gear (yes lampshades) were just some of the more outlandish pieces Browne combined with more traditional men's garb like suiting, capes, parkas, pork pie hats and garters. In a clever twist, models walked amongst the tables at Maxim's to a cabaret soundtrack and gazed (and in some cases glared) at guests, creating a show format role reversal that subverted the idea of who the real spectator was. Of course, the whole thing looked totally bonkers at first glance, but strip back the styling and you'll some great products. Testament to that were the numerous buyers, press and staffers wearing his shrunken grey suits - their red, white and blue ribbon loops (a kind of logo) visible beneath every other collar

Photography: Jason Lloyd-Evans

Thom Browne

Thom Browne

Thom Browne

Thom Browne

Acne

Jonny Johansson closed Paris fashion week with the Acne show held in the cloisters of a very posh Parisian school. The Stockholm-based brand may be our preferred purveyor of skinny jeans, but apart from the one pair sported by Johansson himself, not one pair was shown on the catwalk. Instead - in a presentation as polished as the shoes and as slick as the hair on show - the brand showed a range of colour that was bang on trend and at the same time very Acne (ochre, rust, nude and green), together with tailored sportswear that had a touch of the 1970s about it. All in all, it was so competent that you could almost forget that this is still a relatively new Swedish brand, rather than an established French maison

Photography: Jason Lloyd-Evans

Acne

Acne

Acne

Acne

Rick Owens

Show notes at Rick Owens refer to the ancient Nazca geoglyphs in Peru, which Owens has used as a starting point and title for the collection. Taking from these geoglyphs 'a weird balance of sophistication and crudeness', he then translated the idea into strict lean lines that elongated the body, together with heavily textured fabrics like raw silk or technical textured georgette. Although it may not at first appear so ( Owens's shows are high art) this was a very tailored collection, as for Owens the 'suit' was a structured slim one button jacket with an ankle length 'robe' beneath, which came in shades of vanilla, milk, pearl or dark dust

Photography: Jason Lloyd-Evans


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