On the second day of Paris Men’s Fashion Week, Virgil Abloh at Off-White presented a confident collection for your “public life”; Jonathan Anderson unveiled an eclectic offering for his first men’s runway show in Paris; Pierpaolo Piccioli collaborated with Jun Takahashi for some out-of-this-world prints at Valentino; and Raf Simons delivered a strong tailoring show at the high-brow Shangri-La Hotel.
Read our succinct 10-word reviews below for all you need to know from each show. For the full bottle, listen to the audio review while clicking through the gallery of runway images. Whether you dip and dash, or stay and savour, these reviews are for you to use and enjoy as you please. Très bien!
Remember to come back every day for the latest action from Paris Men’s Fashion Week autumn/winter 2019.
OFF-WHITE: PUBLIC TELEVISION
Designer: Virgil Abloh
10-word review: Hype dressing for your public self, by fusing high with low.
Favourite look: This is the zone where Abloh operates best—rehashing existing street wear tropes, infusing them with attention-grabbing design elements, and peddling them back as high-end fashion. For the boys, it was the opening triplet of baggy washed denim jeans contrasted with oversized blazers worn over white shirts finished off with ties (yes, ties!). That high-low mix also worked with the ladies as seen in the white shirtdress in look 33, with a long ruffling train anchored with black Cowboy boots. It was a confident clashing of binary worlds to present a wardrobe for your best self on “public television”—the theme and title for Off-White’s autumn/winter 2019 collection.
Favourite accessory: Had to be those Cowboy boots made “For Walking”—a nod to Nancy Sinatra’s iconic track, and the very words plastered in white down the side of both boots. Chuck them on with jeans, go rogue and wear them with shorts, or, do as Abloh advises, and wear them with sweats.
JW ANDERSON: BABY’S ON FIRE
Designer: Jonathan Anderson
10-word review: Shaman fashion with eclectic mismatching of exotic prints and shoes.
Favourite look: For Jonathan Anderson’s first men’s runway show in Paris, he created a show space that consisted of five rooms—each featuring a different installation as an homage to American sculptor and artist, Paul Thek; one of his favourite sources of inspiration. There were blown up Earth balloons hovering overhead in one room; a spiral staircase with a nest housing two large eggs in another. And, where we sat at the beginning of the runway, two lemons beside a trail of black sand. Art for a fashion show. What ensued? Fashion as art.
Take for example, our favourite exit in look 37: the eclectic pairing of a multi-coloured striped top with fabric hoods (reminded us of medieval chainmail hoods worn by knights), shorts with elastic drawstrings at the hem, mismatched tiger-stripe socks pulled to the knee, and for good measure, mismatched shoes. And with the art rock track, ‘Baby’s on Fire’ by Brian Eno pumping through the sound system, there was a certain shaman-like vibe to it all. Cult has always been cool.
Favourite accessory: Those deliberately mismatched tiger-stripe socks. Do you buy them separately and mismatch them or do they come already mismatched? We will have to wait till August when merchandise hits stores to find out. But, either way, it’s an easy way to buy into the progressive style of JW Anderson—be it as a slither of personality peeking out from under trousers, or worn in their full glory with shorts.
VALENTINO: TIME TRAVEL TAILORING
Designer: Pierpaolo Piccioli
10-word review: Valentino silhouettes reinterpreted with prints by Jun Takahashi of Undercover.
Favourite look: What do you get when you bring Pierpaolo Piccioli together with Jun Takahashi from Undercover? A menswear collection inspired by time travel that’s replete with acid-bright prints featuring Edgar Allan Poe's face (travelling to the past) merged with flying UFOs (future travel). Sounds crazy? It was major. Just like the orange trench coat in look 37 with Beethoven’s face framed within an electric blue Valentino ‘V’ accompanied by graphic text, ‘Time Traveller Valentino Undercover’.
Favourite accessory: Valentino’s hero sneaker, the Bounce, finds new incarnation this season with the bold addition of red soles. However, our vote for the must-have accessory from the collection comes from yet another partnership—Birkenstock x Valentino slides. Available in black and red, they come emblazoned with the now iconic ‘VLTN’ print on the side. Did somebody say ‘cash cow’?
RAF SIMONS: FLOOR LENGTH FINESSE
Designer: Raf Simons
10-word review: Dramatic coats finessed with lucky charms and topped with caps.
Favourite look: Held in one of the ballrooms of the Shangri-La Hotel on the swanky Paris right bank, it was a stark cry from the other industrial (and far flung) show locations for Simons in recent years. And, given the location, there was another first: allocated seating instead of only providing standing room for his show. Plus, we were treated to grand stucco ceilings and crystal chandeliers. But, this being Simons, he had to ‘rough it up’ with black scaffolding and large stage flights peppered throughout the hall. But I digress, back to the clothes. Even if we were to close our eyes, flip through the Raf Simons AW19 look book and randomly select an outfit, we’d still be happy. Provided that look contained a floor-length coat, of course. Take your pick from either the black and camel options that started the show, or for the more game, the bright hues that closed. If we had to choose, it’d be the closing broad-shoulder wrap coat in a rich raspberry hue, cinched at the waist with a hot pink cloth tie. Rebellious finesse.
Favourite accessory: It would be too obvious to highlight the headgear—a reverse cap configuration but with en enlarged dome body and elongated chin straps (worn undone) that had us thinking of equestrian hats. If you’re pining to be a street style star, invest in one of these and try your luck outside the shows. For everyone else, grab a pair of those spotted or striped black-and-white gloves that, from a distance, could be mistaken for a skeleton print—macabre accents to counterbalance any tailored outfit.
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