OUR PARIS FASHION WEEK MENSWEAR HIGHLIGHTS

Paris Men’s Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2020 began in a haze of colours, football and circus tricks and ended in pearls, sneakers and a Japanese office from the ‘90s. If that sounds like a bizarre combo, then read ahead for our overview of some of the highlights we didn’t want to miss.

It kicked off with the Fumito Ganryu show, located in an iconic Le Palais Chaillot, it set the scene for what would be an incredible start to the week. Inspired by the contrasting colours of nature, designer Ganryu intertwined an impeccable palette of greens, blues and yellows.

Next up was a night-time rendezvous with Nike to celebrate together with the magazine Novembre the beginning of the Women’s Football World Cup. All attendees were blessed with the gift of finger art created by iconic nail artist Lili Creuk. Nike’s night of female empowerment ended with an essay reading by Berlin founded New Models.

  • Photos: Marc Medina

Day two began with warm and buttery croissants and an invitation to the Undercover show. We were pleasantly surprised to see that Japanese designer Jun Takahashi had once again collaborated in an utterly unexpected way with American artist Cindy Sherman, emblazing and embroidering images from the photographer’s Untitled Film Stills Series. Showcasing the artist’s renowned series of self-portraits atop an understated colour palette gave each design a chance to let the details shine through. The collection took a turn toward a more tailored approach to design with Takahashi shedding his usual street looks for blazers and suits.

Later that night, after several minutes spent on deciding which outfit would see us through an evening of two very different brand-sponsored events, we arrived at the The Face magazine party in collaboration with adidas. Located in the gritty heart of Paris at Strasbourg Saint Dennis, the party felt like a turn back to the thriving era of The Face, for sure it was one of the best parties of the season, which ended in everyone dropping low on the dance floor to the sounds of Jayda G, Horse Meet Disco and Mafalda.

  • Photos: Fanny Viguier

The third day of Men’s Fashion Week had us thanking the weather gods for a cooler morning as we navigated the streets with back-to-back meetings and presentations. Finding our way back at the Palais de Tokyo for what could only be the Rick Owens show, we were delightfully surprised to see a clear political message running through this season’s collection. Created as a reaction to Trump’s obsession with building a wall between the US and Mexico, Owen’s incorporated aspects of his own upbringing, with an American father and Mexican mother, and infused them into the design motifs. From the United Farm Workers Association’s Aztec logo emblazed across t-shirts to the debut of a collaboration with Champion, in which Owen’s referenced his cousins’ obsession with the brand in Mexico in the ‘70s; all aspects of the collection radiated a more personal tone than his usual designs.

The utter highlight of the day was stepping back into an exact replica of the early ‘90s office where Shigeyuki Mitsui created the original Asics Gel Lyte III. Situated beside the Saint Martin canal on the top floor of the Asics headquarters is a homage to the genius sneaker designer Mitsui. The room is made up of an ‘80s computer, original sketches of the designer, a Mitsui vintage video game in which the player embodies the designer and a timeline of Gel Lyte III’s. After meeting with the man who has spent over 30 years of his life not just creating, but transforming the sneaker industry, we understood exactly why he was so deserving of an entire exhibit dedicated to his creations. Look out for our interview with Shigeyuki Mitsui where we find out the process behind his iconic designs.

Day four arrived with an invitation to the Commes Des Garçons Homme Plus show. The show had us immediately wanting to don our mother’s pearls and immediately purchase the gender-fluid collection. “Transformation and liberation through time,” was the inspiration behind the collection and designer Rei Kawakubo did just that. Toying with the blending of punk and Victorian styles, the collection included skirts, dresses and tailored jackets with raw edging.

Later that night we navigated the winding streets of the 18th arrondissement towards the Musée de Montmartre for the Casablanca presentation. As if the front row were a testament to the quality and elegance of the brand, it seated not only the elite of fashion but music too. Skepta, Dev Hynes, Sita Abellán and Swae Lee were in front of action as model after model strutted by wearing our ideal summer wardrobe. Oranges, greens, blues and pinks in an array of linen and silk swam by making us wish we could teleport directly to the beach and don every single piece of this collection

Moving through another reality for the greatly anticipated second installment of Samuel Fasse and Salomé Chatriot’s Synthetic Bodies. Attended by both the art and fashion world’s young up and comers, the occasion was referenced to us as a must attend. Walking through a private garden in the 5th arrondissement we were greeted with a futuristic scene ahead of us. Samuel’s signature scarves, printed with impressions of the performers bodies hang next to the installation. Several performers dance in alternating sequences as they are projected as 3D virtual translations onto screens in front. As a whole, the event is one that leaves us feeling as if we’ve just come back from a journey to another reality.

  • Photos: Victor Malecot

Finishing the week was a live performance by iconic New York artist Patrick Church. The event located in the Marais, celebrated the release of Patrick’s latest collection. In a haze of orange and black zebra striped clad gorgeous men wearing the new line was Patrick, head to toe in neon pink, painting the main window of the Parisian concept store Elevastor. Love-infused slogans like ‘I visit you in my dreams’ morphed with portraits in a similar colour palette to his latest line of clothing, to create a series of paintings for the store. A perfect ending for a terrific week.

  • Photos: Mati Eidelman