paris fashion week: balmain
(images via wwd)
it’s hard to know whether to be mad at balmain. we basically keep getting the same looks, but people love it so endearingly, run to buy it regardless of the new-car fees for a jacket, that in the end, can we really criticize it?
for the past few years, since designer christophe decarnin introduced this look, it has inspired more copies than practically any other label. at first people bitched a bit, then they let it go. the popular culture is still embracing this aesthetic, so they didn’t want to fault it. they just let him go as this, um, ‘genius’ designer.
but is he? to be sure, he does this look well. and it’s no small feat to sway everyone from gucci to target into copying your collections. but haven’t we all had it with the eighties’ power shoulders? eventually, he must give it up, and what then?
well, okay, we can just leave that to another time. in the present, formula fully in place, it looks good. prince played on the soundtrack and served as the glittery inspiration for the collection as well. there were a plethora of going to the club, smoking cigarettes while leaning on a limo looking bored but fabulous pieces.
however, there were also more realistic looks than the designer has previously touched in the form of smart separates. while there was at least one good suit, he punctuated the collection with nice trousers and pretty wear-anywhere tie-neck blouses, all creeping towards a seventies vibe which is more in keeping with what the ladies are wanting this season. so perhaps he does see the eighties glam eventually ending.
the clothes were simply stunning displays of work, with their beading, shine, and lavish detail, and could make anyone feel like a star, which she would almost necessarily have to be to afford such things. but really, he needs to take that craftsmanship and move on to something new. we’re all ready for it.