Saturday, January 23, 2010


Since the time of Louis XIV, artists of every genre, from every corner of the earth, whether big, small, established, or emerging, have come to Paris to make it their stage. The first day of men’s collections here drew on that very energy that makes the city so perennially exciting.
At Louis Vuitton construction was king. Menswear director Paul Helbers inserted black leather panels into the shoulders and torsos of his sharply tailored suits. A pea coat got the same treatment. Textures and colors were mixed (like the tweed shoulders on a black blazer) and matched (like the Donegal duffle over a Donegal suit). High top clog boots added a bit of whimsy to the precision and luxury on display.

Korean designer Juun J’s runway show took the season’s black and grey trend but applied it to coats, suits, and shoes that had been doubled-up by joining the layers with chunky gold and silver zippers. The suits’ double lapels were piped with zippers, as were the expandable cargo pockets. Juun J has always played with proportion but with this latest offering the wearer gets to alter the shape on the fly. Outerwear was a stand out, particularly a turquoise snorkel parka, which took a second turn as the show ender when every model came out wearing a golden version for the finale.
The mix master of the day was Dries Van Noten, whose collection was evidently inspired by private schools, both military and preparatory. In a silent room the models sported private school stripes and military-grade Melton wool while carrying little hand speakers from which the show’s soundtrack played. It was kind of like those prep school punks who tear up their expensive blazers and blare music from their cell phones on the subway. On the train it’s annoying, but here it was wonderful.
read more at VMAN