Kenzo goes all Asian in the season’s final show
One hesitates to consider the budget for flights this season for the Kenzo runway show, seeing as the half the cast of some 80 all-Asian models, were flown in from the east especially for this men’s and women’s show.
Referencing two iconic Japanese names – singer and actor Ryuichi Sakamoto and famed supermodel Sayoko Yamaguchi, the one-time muse of founder Kenzo Takada – this was a marvelous performance. Adding to the animated atmosphere, a series of daredevils swung on elastic ropes across the façade of the monumental six-story Lycée Camille Sée where the show was staged. And, just like this eclectic, multi-pattern collection, the building is built in a combination of concrete, rose granite and broken marble chips.
It also was the final show of the 17-day European season and a spectacular way to finish off what proved to be an optimistic season, where all designers were determined to sweep aside the gloom of all the terrorist attacks in Europe this past year.
Hence designers Carol Lim and Humberto Leon sent out exuberant mixes of football stripes, funky florals and bold paisley. Though they underpinned all this with probably their best tailoring to date for Kenzo - from the elongated multi-pocket jackets to the high-waist cool wool shorts - since taking over the creative direction of the house in 2011.
“We flew scores of our models in. We had to. From Korea, Japan, China and Taipei. But it was worth it,” exclaimed Leon post-show.
For ladies, great slacks in Clongowes Wood purple; wonderfully graphic zig-zag bra tops; and multi-fabric tops covered in expressions like Future Mayhem. A suitable denouement to a season where fashion expressed a fresh mood of tolerance and togetherness compared to the dissension, anger and jingoism of Brexit and Trump of 2016.
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