The story of fashion in 2023, as captured in pictures from the pages of Wallpaper*

From Miu Miu knickers, archival Chanel and Loewe angel wings to designer debuts, exits and anniversaries, the definitive fashion moments of 2023 as told through the pages of Wallpaper*

Fashion in 2023 Loewe Mens Womens photographed in art gallery
Jonathan Anderson’s metal angel wings, part of an A/W 2023 men’s collection for Loewe, photographed by Dham Srifuengfung in the Wallpaper’s November 2023 issue. The Northern Irish designer won international plaudits for his work in 2023
(Image credit: Photography by Dham Srifuengfung, fashion by Jason Hughes)

And with that, another year in style reaches its end – one as ever filled with a 365-day schedule of around-the-world runway shows, designer debuts (and just as many exits), blockbuster fashion exhibitions, books and movies, and an exciting new vanguard of international fashion talent defining what style means today. Alongside, the usual slew of must-have garments and trends that achieved cultural (and social media) ubiquity – from Miu Miu going trouser-less to ‘quiet luxury’ entering everyday parlance. Phew.

Here, as the year draws to a close, here is the story of fashion in 2023, as captured in pictures from the pages of Wallpaper*.

The story of fashion in 2023, as captured in Wallpaper*

Julien Dossena paid ode to Paco Rabanne’s legacy

Rabanne collection by Julien Dossena

Rabanne, photographed by Sophie Tajan in the September 2023 Style Issue of Wallpaper*

(Image credit: Photography by Sophie Tajan, fashion by Nicola Neri)

Paco Rabanne, the Spanish couturier whose chainmail and metal creations helped define 1960s ‘Space Age’ fashion, died this past February, aged 88. The following month Julien Dossena – who now leads his eponymous house, Rabanne – provided a ’coda to the couturier legacy’ as part of his A/W 2023 collection, which ended with five archival dresses created by Rabanne. ‘Spanning five decades, these dresses will signal the innovative craftsmanship that defines the timeless and totemic women of Paco Rabanne,’ read the collection notes. ‘He left behind so much, all those radical moments of modernity,’ Dossena told Wallpaper* in the September Style Issue. ‘When you wear Rabanne chainmail, it’s really a feeling. There is a sensation between the garment and the skin.’

One of Dossena’s own chainmail creations was photographed by Sophie Tajan in the same issue, which celebrated Dossena’s landmark ten years at the brand.  ‘Now, there’s a perception of the brand that is completely different,’ he said. ‘First, it was the industry insiders that were sceptical about what Rabanne could be. Then we got them on side. Now, Rabanne is going mainstream. I can feel the evolution.’ 

Matthieu Blazy completed his ‘Italian trilogy’ of shows at Bottega Veneta

A/W 2023 best looks

Bottega Veneta, photographed by Alessandro Furchino Capria in the September 2023 Style Issue of Wallpaper*

(Image credit: Photography by Alessandro Furchino Capria, fashion by Jason Hughes)

An extraordinary trio of collections marked Matthieu Blazy’s assured debut at Bottega Veneta, where he was appointed creative director after the exit of Daniel Lee in 2021. Deemed his ‘Italia’ trilogy, the three shows – each taking place in Milan – aimed to capture what the designer deemed ‘the alchemy of the street’, seeing the quotidian (from white tank tops to plaid shirts and blue jeans) rendered in imaginative new fabrications. Case in point, his array of ‘trompe l’oeil’ pieces, where a garment might appear to be created from cotton, denim or wool but were actually crafted from delicately hand-painted or dyed leather in the Italian house’s famed atelier. 

The final chapter took place in February 2023, perhaps his boldest expression of the essence of the house yet – a stream of unexpected elements, whether knitted ‘wool’ boots which looked like socks, flannel pyjamas in featherweight nappa leather, or ties which appeared to have been crafted from raised-texture ostrich leather (they too were actually embossed goatskin). The result was what Blazy called ‘a strange carnival, a crowd of people from anywhere and everywhere’. This particular look was taken from Wallpaper’s September Style Issue, photographed by Alessandro Furchino Capria and part of The Glossary, in which Dal Chodha broke down A/W 2023’s ‘extra-ordinary’ looks.

Coco Chanel’s expansive body of work was lauded at the V&A

Chanel V&A archive dress

Archival Chanel, photographed by Oskar Proctor in the October 2023 Guest Editors Issue of Wallpaper*

(Image credit: Photography by Oskar Proctor, fashion by Jason Hughes)

In October, the V&A granted Wallpaper* a rare look inside the museum’s extraordinary Chanel archive in anticipation of its latest blockbuster fashion exhibition, ‘Gabrielle Chanel. Fashion Manifesto’. A wide-ranging exploration of the designer – who is perhaps best known as ‘Coco’ Chanel – and her oeuvre, it celebrated the French couturier’s role in reshaping the contemporary woman’s wardrobe. ‘It’s about chic, simple clothing, looking at movement and the body. These elements she creates – the jersey, the little black dress, the suit – these are the things she comes back to time and again and refines them,’ said its curator Oriole Cullen. 

Here, a silk tulle, satin crêpe, chiffon and lace dress from S/S 1930 by Chanel is photographed by London-born Oskar Proctor, selected by Wallpaper* fashion and style director Jason Hughes. 

Sarah Burton said goodbye to Alexander McQueen after three decades

Woman in Alexander McQueen

Alexander McQueen, photographed by Melanie + Ramon in the September 2023 Style Issue of Wallpaper* 

(Image credit: Photography by Melanie + Ramon, fashion by Jason Hughes)

After over two decades at the British label, Sarah Burton announced her departure from Alexander McQueen this September. At the beginning of October in Paris – surrounded by the vast fabric works of Polish artist Magdalena Abakanowicz – she presented an emotive final collection, inspired by ‘the female anatomy, Queen Elizabeth I [and] the blood red rose’. Closing with house muse Naomi Campbell, it ended with a rapturous standing ovation (in December, she won the Trailblazer Award at The Fashion Awards 2023).  

It was also an ode to house founder Lee McQueen, who she first worked with in 1996 as an intern after graduating from Central Saint Martins. She would go on to become the designer’s right-hand woman, becoming head of womenswear in 2000 and later becoming creative director after his death in 2010. Her astute collections married McQueen’s knack for provocation and drama with emotive elements of handcraft, often inspired by ancient British folklore and ritual. She will be succeeded by Irish designer, and fellow Central Saint Martins graduate, Seán McGirr.

Miu Miu went trouser-less

Autumn Fashion A/W 2023 Mens Womens photographed in art gallery

Miu Miu, photographed by Dham Srifuengfung in the November 2023 Art Issue of Wallpaper*

(Image credit: Photography by Dham Srifuengfung, fashion by Jason Hughes)

In 2022, we named Miu Miu’s sawn-off micro mini one of the definitive fashion moments of the year – entirely ubiquitous, much copied but never equalled. This year, Miuccia Prada continued her knack for capturing the zeitgeist with an altogether more daring item: the knicker, worn on the runway with tights, cardigans and heels (including memorably by actor Emma Corrin, who donned a bejewelled pair). It was part of an A/W 2023 collection the designer described as exploring ‘ways of looking’. Here, the distinct look is photographed by Dham Srifuengfung in the  November 2023 Art Issue of Wallpaper*.

‘I am always interested in how people look at things, their consideration… why people are attracted to certain ideas, why others repulse them,’ she explained. ‘[This collection is about] how fashion and fashion design can change perceptions, of things we think we know. It’s an invitation to reconsider.’

Willy Chavarria helped put American fashion centre stage

American fashion designers photo shoot

Willy Chavarria, photographed by Davey Adésida in the August 2023 Made in the USA Issue of Wallpaper*

(Image credit: Photography by Davey Adésida)

In Wallpaper’s August ‘Made in the USA’ issue – a celebration of creative America – we photographed a new class of American designers defining the country’s creative landscape. Among them was Willy Chavarria, a California-born designer who is fast becoming one of American fashion’s most distinct voices. Here, his work is photographed by New York-based photographer Davey Adésida.

Marrying archetypal American garments – he would work at a slew of the country’s best-known brands, including Ralph Lauren, before starting his label – with the elegant austerity of ecclesiastical dress and the dress codes of the Mexican-American community of which he is a part, he would be named CFDA Menswear Designer of the Year, as well as Designer of the Year at the Latin American awards two days prior. 

Nicolas Ghesquière marked ten years at Louis Vuitton

Woman in black and white wearing bustier and trousers with giant zipper by Louis Vuitton

Louis Vuitton, photographed by Melanie + Ramon in the March 2023 Style Issue of Wallpaper*

(Image credit: Photography by Melanie + Ramon, fashion by Jason Hughes)

Nicolas Ghesquière defines his tenure at Louis Vuitton – which began in 2013 – as a dialogue between ’fashion and time’, his defiantly postmodern collections hopping between eras and references, from the far-off future to the court of Louis XIV. ‘The rapport between those two elements remains fundamental to my work,’ he said in 2020. ‘I have always looked to marry silhouettes, techniques, memories, and impressions from the past with the latest technology to create fashion for today that speaks to the future.’

2023 saw Ghesquière’s own brush with time: ten years as womenswear creative director of the Parisian house, a relative lifetime in the near-constant entries and exits of designers at the city’s other maisons. And that’s not it: in November, it was announced that the designer had signed a contract for five more years in the role. Vive la Ghesquière.

Conner Ives lead fashion’s new vanguard

Woman in Conner Ives silk dress stood next to chair

Conner Ives, photographed by Jessica Madavo in the January The Future Issue of Wallpaper*

(Image credit: Photography by Jessica Madavo, fashion by Clara Mary Joy)

In January’s ‘The Future Issue’ of Wallpaper* rising photographer Jessica Madavo photographed fashion’s new vanguard – a group of international designers presenting a new way to dress (from biofabricated materials to upcycled gowns). Among them was young American designer Conner Ives, who earlier this month would go on to win the BFC Foundation Designer Award at The Fashion Awards 2023.

‘I don’t want this to just be a flash in the pan,’ he told Tilly Macalister-Smith of his approach, which is largely defined by taking vintage clothing and reformulating the garments into his distinct 2000s-tinged designs. ‘We are trying to change so much. I want to blow apart our idea of what sustainability is.’

Daniel Lee debuted at Burberry (and began his transformation of the house)

Men’s Tailoring 2023 Fashion Trend Story

Burberry, photographed by Daniel Riera in the December 2023 Entertaining Issue of Wallpaper*

(Image credit: Photography by Daniel Riera, fashion by David St John James)

Daniel Lee’s arrival at Burberry was no doubt the year’s most-anticipated designer debut, with curious editors moving en masse to London’s Kennington Park this past February to see if he could replicate the magic touch which saw him transform Italian house Bottega Veneta (he had exited that role the year prior).

An astute collection saw the Yorkshire-born designer mine the eccentricities of British dress codes with pieces which spanned enormous trapper hats, mallard-print shirting and riffs on the house’s ’Equestrian Knight’ logo, which has since become the emblem of Lee‘s vision for the house (as well as a distinct shade of Burberry blue). Here, from later in the year – photographed by Daniel Riera in Wallpaper’s December issue which captured the season’s offbeat tailoring – a suit from Lee’s Spring 2024 collection for the house, featuring a gleefully warped take on traditional British houndstooth.

Quiet luxury entered everyday parlance 

Women’s outerwear photographed on the streets of Paris

Ferragamo, photographed by Oskar Proctor in the October 2023 Guest Editors Issue of Wallpaper*

(Image credit: Photography by Valentin Hennequin, fashion by Jason Hughes)

If 2022 saw designers embrace the outré and the surreal, 2023 saw an altogether more subdued trend, ‘quiet luxury’, enter everyday parlance. It referred to the kind of understated, slogan and logo-free garments popularised by the uber-rich protagonists of Succession – which itself came to a much-talked-about end in 2023 – from layers of cashmere and classic camel overcoats to sportier wool caps, gilets and hoodies. Loro Piana, Brunello Cucinelli, Max Mara, Hermès, The Row and Zegna were some of the labels which best epitomised the changing mood, defined by their conspicuousness (but easily identifiable for those in the know). 

And, if the expression itself – alongside its tabloidy synonym ‘stealth weatlh’ – has since become overused marketing speak, there is no doubt that fashion did indeed eschew theatrics in favour of pieces made to last: cue a stream of wear-forever tailoring, cocooning merino and cashmere knits, and richly luxurious shades of brown, beige, ivory, grey and burgundy on the runways of New York, London, Milan and Paris. Here, a faux-fur coat Ferragamo coat captured by Valentin Hennequin as part of our October enveloping outerwear story, encapsulates the year’s bourgeois mood. 

While Jonathan Anderson won the year’s fashion plaudits

Best of A/W 2023 collections

Loewe, photographed by Georgia Devey Smith in the September 2023 Style Issue of Wallpaper*

(Image credit: Photography by Georgia Devey Smith, fashion by Jason Hughes)

‘Some years are different,’ said Jonathan Anderson on Instagram earlier this month after his Designer of the Year win at The Fashion Awards 2023, which followed a win for International Designer of the Year at the CFDA Awards in November. The plaudits followed a year of acclaim for the Northern Irish designer at both his eponymous label JW Anderson and at Loewe, where a mood of reduction infused his ever-imaginative riffs on the archetypal elements of a wardrobe. 

There were many highlights – a memorable collaboration with choreographer Michael Clark at JW Anderson, or the skewed ’fish eye’ proportions of his S/S 2024 men’s and womenswear collections at Loewe – though these apparition-like printed gowns from his A/W 2023 collection, inspired by the works of Gerhard Richter, remain imprinted in the memory. One of them appeared in the September 2023 Style Issue of Wallpaper*, photographed by Georgia Devey Smith.

Fashion Features Editor

Jack Moss is the Fashion Features Editor at Wallpaper*, joining the team in 2022. Having previously been the digital features editor at AnOther and digital editor at 10 and 10 Men magazines, he has also contributed to titles including i-D, Dazed, 10 Magazine, Mr Porter’s The Journal and more, while also featuring in Dazed: 32 Years Confused: The Covers, published by Rizzoli. He is particularly interested in the moments when fashion intersects with other creative disciplines – notably art and design – as well as championing a new generation of international talent and reporting from international fashion weeks. Across his career, he has interviewed the fashion industry’s leading figures, including Rick Owens, Pieter Mulier, Jonathan Anderson, Grace Wales Bonner, Christian Lacroix, Kate Moss and Manolo Blahnik.