Pressiat’s Vincent Garnier reminisced about the Parisian woman of his ‘80s youth in all her big-shouldered and big-haired glory (nevermind that he wasn’t born until the ‘90s) as the sartorial touchstone of this season’s collection.
A frequently mined reference to be sure, but far too conventional for the subversive young designer. So he took that elegant woman, crossed her with German comedian Klaus Nomi and let her loose in an underground club. There she freed the nipple, as demonstrated by one model throwing off a demurely clutched cape (and possibly the patriarchy) while strutting confidently down the dance floor-slash-runway.
Nude gave way to power dressing and then flipped back again in a contrasting ping-pong play on sex appeal.
The structured floor-length coats with wide lapels and stitched collars in cream and black displayed his knack for tailoring, deftly displayed on a white tuxedo jumpsuit. Other pieces included linebacker-sized exaggerated shoulder harnesses that topped form-fitting minidresses on women, or were simply worn alone against an impressive six pack and low-cut trousers on men.
That’s too pedantic, however, as the collection is gender neutral. “For me there’s no gender, for me that’s very important. I don’t even understand this thing,” he said after the show. “You can be sexy and successful. We are ready to fight for this world.”
In addition to his signature corsetry, there were lots of asymmetric looks. A cropped bomber with hidden zip pockets was a clever piece.
The audience was stacked with Garnier’s friends, who cheered and clapped for models that regularly walk in his show. Held at Carbone, the techno club located under La Caserne sustainable fashion incubator, it was a world of contrasts.
Guests emerged up the back stairs into the central garden, blinking into the light with Garnier’s vision in focus.
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