The theme from The Dark Knight cued a show for Lanvin that also had a heroic male as its theme. But he wore so many faces it was as though Alber Elbaz and Lucas Ossendrijver were conducting a demographic survey of the heroes of Lanvinland. What they had in common: a uniform of some kind. "The best way for men to dress," Elbaz declared. "A man in uniform is always a hero." First out was a persona the designers described as "security guard," which meant narrow, military-inflected layers scissored from bonded leather.
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Kim Jones' debut as men's style director at Louis Vuitton today was a coup similar to the one achieved by Vuitton's artistic director, Marc Jacobs, 14 years ago. A union that seemed unlikely on the surface turned out in actuality to be a relationship of remarkable, intimate compatibility. In the four months since he was appointed to the position, Jones and his team managed to turn out a collection that wove his own history into Vuitton's heritage. The common bond? Travel. Vuitton has always been the traveler's brand. Jones grew up in Kenya, and his life since has been defined by a nomadic spirit.
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After the show, Formichetti described the full mix of inspirations that fed this collection: the fabulists of Italian cinema, Fellini and Pasolini; Japanese comics; the heroic, masculine aesthetic of Herb Ritts and Bruce Weber; sport; Greek mythology. "This season, I put more of myself into it," he said. That's a lot of oneself to cram into any collection. Accordingly, Greek gods, muscle-bound frat boys, tattooed punks, and sylph-ish male models all took their turn down the catwalk, often spattered in glitter. The first boy out sported a pair of giant bronze Iron Man arms.
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A more germane reference for the clothes he showed today was legendary couturier Cristobal Balenciaga, whose sculpted volumes are often echoed in Owens' own dramatic drapes. Using fabrics as true to couture as raw silk and shantung, Owens created his own version of the classic three-piece suit—jacket, top, and skirt—except he added a fourth layer, a tuniclike piece. "I just invented the four-piece suit," he crowed after the show.
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shows are unparalleled in Paris—if for no other reason than for their echt Yohji-ness. The cavalcade of boys and men (Yamamoto insists, against conventional fashion wisdom, on casting both) floating down the runway in their billowing culottes; long, almost tuniclike white shirts; and patchwork-piece jackets struck a poignant note. His play with large volumes called to mind both traditional ethnic garb and street wear, reminding you how much the expressive bagginess favored by the new generation of street-style blog courters owes to the designer (even if, alas, they don't all know they're quoting him). Seen one after the other after the other, those enormous culottes, often rippled with pleats, and alternated with ultrawide cropped pants, resounded like a sartorial gong. (The music, for what it's worth, was peppy Asian pop.) It didn't sound like much else going on in Paris this week, but it rang in your ears a bit—and Pied Piper-ishly, it seemed to call droves of Yohji faithful to huddle and wait on the tiny street outside.
By Matthew Schneier : Style.com