Courtesy of Saint Laurent
As the world opens up, event dressing is top of mind. But the running theory that we’re all about to bust out in ball gowns and tuxedos not only seems far-fetched but incompatible with what party-goers will actually wear. Saint Laurent’s Anthony Vaccarello understands this.
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Set in an undisclosed location (Iceland? Antarctica?) that Vaccarello wishes to remain mum about, the Parisian atelier presented its winter 2021 collection against an epic backdrop. With a dramatic soundtrack and sweeping scenes of iceberg studded beaches, eerie cliffs, fog disperses as models walk by like creatures of the night still wearing last night’s Going Out looks. It’s a jarring experience reminiscent of a walk of shame, but without embarrassment. The juxtaposition is pointed, taking ownership of being out of your element in a post-pandemic world.
“Serious matters push you to take other things less seriously, finding the balance while staying on the edge is a sophisticated aptitude,” Vaccarello stated in the collection notes. The severe landscape offset by the un-severe clothes poses the obvious question: Who won’t feel weird wearing a party dress in 2021?
The newfound urge to experiment with our style once we emerge from lockdown is going to look like this: a little weird, very playful, and who knows, maybe you will regret wearing a metallic leotard, but you’re going to do it anyway. The refreshing part isn’t its frivolity—that’s what Vaccarello’s Saint Laurent has always been—but subverting and embracing it. It’s not camp, it’s just a full-grown adult wearing a babydoll dress with bows. Hard stop. No questions asked, no explanation required.
The show wasn’t without its celebrity-studded front row, either. Virtual attendees included familiar friends of the brand: Zoe Kravitz, Hailey Bieber, Rosé, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Indya Moore, and more.
Accommodating the new needs in fashion is what almost every designer is prepping for, but Vaccarello speaks to it both on the surface and at a carnal level. After this difficult year, aren’t we all metaphorically stumbling out in broad daylight awkwardly wearing last night’s garbs, stilettos sticking in mud?
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