Boys Boys Boys: Highlights from Paris Men's Collections – Part #1

As observed in NOWFASHION's look at independent designer brands, the Fall/Winter 2016 menswear shows in Paris have barely kicked off, but the quest for youth is already palpable on the runways – and even established fashion labels such as Lemaire, Valentino, Haider Ackermann, and Raf Simons got a fair share of the youth pie.

 

 

"I have so much time now," Raf Simons gushed backstage after his F/W 2016 menswear show. Everyone in the industry wondered what Raf's new menswear offering might look like, especially after the designer decided to leave his role at Christian Dior in late 2015 in order to focus on his own brand and creative process. And if one thing is certain it is that Simons' post-Dior era already feels like a rebirth, a rejuvenation of his own design inventory. And as such, the designer has tapped into the many cultural codes of his own generation for his latest menswear offering.

Simons is no stranger to conceptual surroundings and he therefore sent out his models through a maze resembling set-designs in whose corners you could find the designer's many culturally loaded memories – his "nightmares and dreams." "The impact of Twin Peaks on my generation is a considerable one," explained the designer who added that his collection is a tribute to David Lynch's dark fantasies, as well as to Angelo Badalamenti – the famed composer who is behind Twin Peaks' unique theme.

 

 

"If one thing is certain it is that Simons' post-Dior era already feels like a rebirth, a rejuvenation of his own design inventory."

Further outstanding personalities and generational mile stones mentioned on the designer's show notes, such as Martin Margiela, Cindy Sherman, Elm Street and Scream – an homage to the defunct Wes Craven – American and Belgian Youth as well as Boy Scout, School Boy, and Red Americana, among others, all made for coherent guiding threads throughout his youthful collection that made an impression with shredded XXL knitwear, sweaters, and coats – Freddy Krueger seemed to have sharpened his claws on it – aesthetic references to CBGB, also known as the birthplace of New York's punk scene, and an overall grunge and slacker infused styling that channeled the looks of Dawson's Creek and Craven's late 80s and 90s horror movie heroes. "All the things on this list where what was on my mind," Simons continued. "Not trying to think about the stories I could make," he added, emphasizing that he refused to pinpoint a common guiding, leaving his collection's interpretation largely to our own memories and perception of the above mentioned artists and cultural statements.

 

 

"Punk's Not Dead – and it comes with a sultry update."

Haider Ackermann, for his part, had a similar approach to youth, while the result of his creative process remained considerably different from Simons' take on the Fall 2016 menswear season. Ackermann decided to update his dandy-esque signature looks crafted from rich velvets, wools, and silks with a good dose of punk flavor and his usual rock infused elements – an offering that was so very much in the here and now and yet came with the distinct romantic feeling of a past century. Same, same but different, as Ackermann's menswear was infused with both an allure for understated sophistication and a new form of sex appeal.

 

 

"Is 'boyscout' the new 'preppy' ?"

Valentino's Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli took the quest for youth quite literally and sent out some fine looking Boy Scouts on their Parisian runway. As Raf Simons also referred to the Boy Scout aesthetics later that day, we wonder whether the designers in Paris just might have set the tone for this season's new, fashionable style element. The saying goes that "two is a coincidence, but three is a trend," so before going deeper into that subject we might rather want to wait for the Paris men's collections to unfurl a bit further. Chiuri and Piccioli did what they do best: mix-matching a range of cultural references, memories, and emblems for a métissage of style that calls for individuality – think Boy Scout vs punk and classic vs tribal and translating these inspirations into a highly wearable men's collection. Existentialist statements like "adventure as a self-examination" and "into the wild" were on the menu of Valentino's show and made for a desirable collection that questioned the process of youth as a constant exploration and discovery.

 

 

Earlier that day, Lemaire offered his very own celebration of youth at the Université Descartes in Paris. The location seemed like a natural fit, as Lemaire's menswear offering was his most youthful one so far. The French designer swapped his mature cuts and Far East-flavored shapes for a more urban and adolescent take on menswear. And as Lemaire and his muse and partner, Sarah-Linh Tran, never give in to industry trends and expectations, and this season, their flawless take on the youth and its eclectic pulsebeat came off quite effortless and sometimes even sensual, thus opening a new chapter to Lemaire's ever-growing inventory of menswear essentials. On the runway, this was expressed through a range of standout pieces in neutral colors, including appealing outerwear such as suit coats in shetland tweeds, duffle jackets in bouclette wool knit that were often paired with v-neck tops, large pants, shoulder bags and denim slip-ons that sublimated the models' nonchalant too-cool-for-school attitude.

 

OUR #PFW COVERAGE HERE.

All the menswear Fall/Winter 2016 collections here.

SHARE
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Pinterest
SIMILAR ARTICLES
A Verdict on Digital Fashion Week
By Fabio Ciquera
In the past two weeks, we have witnessed an array of different and varied virtual presentations,...
By Fabio Ciquera
In the past two weeks, we have witnessed an array of different and varied virtual presentations, online happenings and symposia. One cannot accuse luxury houses to lack inventiveness, and there is a genuine appreciation for the quick turnaround in moving everything online. From Loewe to Prada and...
In the past two weeks, we have witnessed an array of different and varied virtual presentations, online happenings and symposia. One cannot accuse luxury houses to lack inventiveness, and there is a genuine appreciation for the quick turnaround in moving everything online. From Loewe to Prada and Dior, among the many names, the creative solutions have been exciting to watch. This new reality...
Revival LDN: The Upcycled Fashion Brand Aiming At Helping the Environment
By Alice Ierace
For years now, many fashion brands have added sustainability to their vocabulary and, through...
By Alice Ierace
For years now, many fashion brands have added sustainability to their vocabulary and, through research and proposals, have tried to lessen the fashion industry’s huge impact on the environment. However, despite the efforts, many are still the fast-fashion brands ignoring the issue. The problem is...
For years now, many fashion brands have added sustainability to their vocabulary and, through research and proposals, have tried to lessen the fashion industry’s huge impact on the environment. However, despite the efforts, many are still the fast-fashion brands ignoring the issue. The problem is that, no matter how sustainable they deem they are, we are still living in a fast-paced environment...
Reflections on Life post Lockdown at MFW
By Alice Ierace and Elisa Carassai
Etro Kicking off day two of Milan Fashion Week was ETRO presenting its Men’s Spring Summer 2021...
By Alice Ierace and Elisa Carassai
By Alice Ierace and Elisa Carassai
Etro Kicking off day two of Milan Fashion Week was ETRO presenting its Men’s Spring Summer 2021 and Women’s Resort 2021 collections with an informal gathering at Milan’s iconic Four Seasons Hotel. “We are finally back together, in the garden of this iconic hotel, in the heart of Milan’s...
Etro Kicking off day two of Milan Fashion Week was ETRO presenting its Men’s Spring Summer 2021 and Women’s Resort 2021 collections with an informal gathering at Milan’s iconic Four Seasons Hotel. “We are finally back together, in the garden of this iconic hotel, in the heart of Milan’s Montenapoleone district. We want to highlight that we are a family, that Etro is a family living in a world...
White Mountaineering Brings Back BLK Line
By Elisa Carassai
Showcasing at Paris Fashion Week, ’s White Mountaineering is the creative baby of Japanese...
By Elisa Carassai
Showcasing at Paris Fashion Week, ’s White Mountaineering is the creative baby of Japanese designer Yosuke Aizawa. This season, the designer not only presented an exclusive film directed by Daito Manabe from the Rhizomatiks, but he also decided to relaunch his original BLK line. Launched in 2009,...
Showcasing at Paris Fashion Week, ’s White Mountaineering is the creative baby of Japanese designer Yosuke Aizawa. This season, the designer not only presented an exclusive film directed by Daito Manabe from the Rhizomatiks, but he also decided to relaunch his original BLK line. Launched in 2009, White Mountaineering’s BLK Line proposed a new feel to outdoor wear with high-spec textiles and...
Digital Meets Local at Sunnei
By Elisa Carassai
Before lockdown started, Loris Messina and Simone Rizzo...
By Elisa Carassai
By Elisa Carassai
Before lockdown started, Loris Messina and Simone Rizzo were supposed to move in their newly-bought building, Casa Sunnei. Not being able to move in, and stuck quarantining home, the duo started reflecting on what they could do to move forward, at a slower...
Before lockdown started, Loris Messina and Simone Rizzo were supposed to move in their newly-bought building, Casa Sunnei. Not being able to move in, and stuck quarantining home, the duo started reflecting on what they could do to move forward, at a slower pace.  “During the lockdown, I realized we were moving at a pace that was too fast - we were...
A Play of Poetics at MFW
By Elisa Carassai
MSGM’s Midsummer Night’s Dream Kicking off the first day of Milan’s Digital Fashion Week was...
By Elisa Carassai
By Elisa Carassai
MSGM’s Midsummer Night’s Dream Kicking off the first day of Milan’s Digital Fashion Week was Massimo Giorgetti’s MSGM, with a film celebrating the new Milanese generation of young creatives, as well as the joy of life post-lockdown. Inspired by writer Isabella Santacroce’s book Fluo: Storie di...
MSGM’s Midsummer Night’s Dream Kicking off the first day of Milan’s Digital Fashion Week was Massimo Giorgetti’s MSGM, with a film celebrating the new Milanese generation of young creatives, as well as the joy of life post-lockdown. Inspired by writer Isabella Santacroce’s book Fluo: Storie di Giovani a Riccione (“Fluo: Stories of Young People in Riccione”) – who also happens to be from...
Purity and Tradition Intertwine at MFW
By Alice Ierace
Prada and The Show That Never HappenedFew people do fashion quite like Miuccia Prada. After the...
By Alice Ierace
Prada and The Show That Never HappenedFew people do fashion quite like Miuccia Prada. After the announcement back in February stating that Raf Simons would become the brand’s new co-creative director, today we were lucky enough to witness Miuccia’s last solo collection – her final bow after three...
Prada and The Show That Never HappenedFew people do fashion quite like Miuccia Prada. After the announcement back in February stating that Raf Simons would become the brand’s new co-creative director, today we were lucky enough to witness Miuccia’s last solo collection – her final bow after three decades of unforgettable shows.Of course, a simple presentation wasn’t in the plan – it needed that...
Auralee’s Imaginary Journey Through Time
By Alice Ierace
Firstly launched in Tokyo, designer Ryota Iwai decided to present Auralee’s latest Spring/Summer...
By Alice Ierace
Firstly launched in Tokyo, designer Ryota Iwai decided to present Auralee’s latest Spring/Summer 21 collection during digital Paris Fashion Week as one of the major independent fashion brands.As a brand, Auralee is renowned for its magnificent clean silhouettes, impeccable quality and minimal...
Firstly launched in Tokyo, designer Ryota Iwai decided to present Auralee’s latest Spring/Summer 21 collection during digital Paris Fashion Week as one of the major independent fashion brands.As a brand, Auralee is renowned for its magnificent clean silhouettes, impeccable quality and minimal styling. Its aim? A full exploration into the development of their own fabrics. By taking inspiration...