The womenswear catwalk season drew to a close this week in Paris, where designers evolved established trends and offered up new directions for spring 20.
In a city known for its drama and decadent designs, the spring 20 catwalks were awash with an unexpected fabric – everyday blue denim. The humble material cropped up everywhere, including at high fashion houses Chanel and Celine, in the form of skirts, shirts, jackets and classic jeans.
Pump up the volume
The “big dress energy” that has been powering down the catwalks of New York, London and Milan surged into Paris, as over-the-top and voluminous shapes dominated dress silhouettes. Full-length, floor-skimming skirts, puffed-up peplums and bouncy statement sleeves were all key elements, in floaty and lightweight fabrics. Expect pared-back takes to trickle down to the mainstream.
While classic denim appeared as everyday jeans, brands showing in Paris took the standard shirt and elevated it for the new season. In the hands of designers such as Jonathan Anderson at Loewe and Pierpaolo Piccioli at Valentino, standard shirting became elegant, eye-catching dresses – simple yet statement-making in equal measure.
There was a throwback theme to a handful of stand-out collections in Paris this season, as designers reworked classic French looks into modern iterations. The 1970s was a dominant decade, from its groovy prints through to its boho babes, while the boldness of the swinging 1960s and pin-up style of the 1940s and 1950s all made an appearance.
Long and short of it
A trend that has been bubbling up across the new season’s fashion weeks made its biggest impact in Paris, where shorts of all shapes and lengths were on display. There were mini-shorts through to roomy bloomers and slim, tailored Bermudas – a season of shorts for all.
All white now
There has been a rainbow of colours covering much of the next season’s new ranges and Paris was much the same, from bold saturated blocks through to the return of neon (see Valentino). However, it was the lack of colour that shone as all-white styles pervaded, particularly across dresses, some of which had a whiff of bridal style.
The Paris Fashion Week take on spring 20’s tailoring trend – boxy silhouettes and pared-back designs in a neutral palette. Highlights include the pumped-up blazers and slouchy trouser suits from Hermes and Kwaidan Editions, which lent a contemporary freshness to the classic tailored look.
In the Paris update to perennial spring florals, densely packed prints and patterns covered head-to-toe looks. The busy designs packed a punch in vibrant colours and eye-catching arrangements, even worn across matching separates.
Continuing the trend for easy, wearable clothes in Paris (see the return of denim), the humble jumpsuit also made an appearance. While eveningwear options were on show, the casual, comfortable options à la Isabel Marant caught Drapers’ eye.
Two of the season’s trends of note merged in Paris, as designers opted for all-leather looks in slick blocks of black. It added a toughness to feminine dresses at Alexander McQueen, and brought a modern sexiness to classic shirts and blazers at Off-White and Kwaidan Editions.