For one season only, leading Italian luxury brand Gucci uprooted from Milan to Paris to showcase its spring/summer 2019 collection. This was the final instalment of creative director Alessandro Michele’s three-part homage to France, and the brand is owned by French conglomerate Kering. Gucci shows are already among fashion month’s most-anticipated, from the label’s influential designs to the unusual props often used – remember the dinosaur eggs and model heads carried down the catwalk last season? – so the new location added even more excitement. However, the brand hasn’t forgotten its roots, as it hosted a special event during Milan Fashion Week too.
This year contemporary minimal hero brand Celine saw the departure of longstanding creative director Phoebe Philo and announced in June that Hedi Slimane would be its new designer. Slimane has an excellent CV, having previously headed up Saint Laurent, where he oversaw mass rebranding and changed the label’s name from Yves Saint Laurent, as well as working for Dior Homme for seven years, where he is said by some to have transformed the male silhouette. Speculation surrounds which direction the brand will take under Slimane, with his recent changes including removing the accent from the Celine name, wiping all social media history and temporarily shutting down the e-commerce site, but the industry has high hopes and expectations as to what the future holds. All we know so far is that womenswear and menswear will be showcased together, with everyone in-house keeping all other details under wraps. Will it remain the world’s favourite sleek, simple and impactful brand, or will Slimane make bigger changes than the brand has ever seen?
Since Georgian designer Demna Gvasalia, founder of renowned cult streetwear brand Vetements, took over as creative director of Balenciaga in 2015, the label has become one of fashion’s most-hyped brands. Having previously headed up design teams at labels including Louis Vuitton and Maison Margiela, Gvasalia continues to push the boundaries of fashion design. His most notable creations for the brand include the Triple S sneakers, puffer jacket and the Balenciaga crocs. It seems that whatever he produces – no matter how wild – becomes a trend. One thing is for sure when it comes to Balenciaga under Gvasalia: we might not know exactly what will be sent down the catwalk, but we’ll definitely be watching.
After designing the wedding dress of world-famous fashion blogger Chiara Ferragni, creative director Maria Grazia Chiuri has kicked off Paris Fashion Week with Dior’s spring/summer 2019 collection. Set at the Hippodrome de Paris Longchamp racecourse, the show was a celebration of female empowerment, a theme that has been prevalent in many of Chiuri’s recent collections. The collection was choreographed with contemporary ballet dancers, evoking the sense of tradition and femininity that the brand is well known for.
Simon Porte Jacquemus started his own brand at just 19 and has seen incredible success with his sleek womenswear designs. Inspired by the 1980s and old French films that celebrate women, his feminine styles and famous XXL straw hats have made his shows among the most anticipated at Paris Fashion Week. His first ever menswear collection, showcased this summer in Marseille, confirmed to the world what the fashion elite already knew – Jacquemus is the next big thing. Almost overnight, the brand went from being an emerging designer brand with promise to one of the most sought-after in the world, worn by figures such as Emily Ratajkowski, Kim Kardashian and Kendall Jenner. The spring/summer 2019 womenswear show was not short of celebrity sightings and, most importantly, great fashion.