Spring/Summer 2015 Chanel

Bloggers’ obsession with street style has reached fever pitch here in Paris, and that might have been on Karl Lagerfeld’s mind when he erected hoardings of a typical Parisian street, “Boulevard Chanel”, inside the Grand Palais. Show-goers had to look twice to realise it was hoardings and not an actual bricks-and-mortar street (no expense spared here), there were even real puddles by the curb, because even a Chanel street isn’t immune to the occasional downpour.

Models came out en masse, alone or in twos and threes chatting as though they were out for a casual Saturday stroll. The clothes they wore felt like their own, which might have something to do with the familiarity of them. It felt like a heritage collection, exactly the sort of clothes that Chanel’s moneyed customers come to this house for. There were countless interpretations of tweedy suits every one as fabulous as the next whether they were rendered into flared trousers or micro minis; splashy painterly florals over silks, kicky box-pleated skirts, sometimes layered over narrow black trousers; and mosaic cocktail dresses made up of rectangular pewter plastic tablets, arranged like bricks, which echoed back to the architecture of the show’s surroundings.

An appearance by Gisele was also thrown in for good measure, dressed in one of Chanel’s signature striped cardigan dresses. There were some newer pieces spotted here too, like last summer’s hit Art bag – itself a street star sensation, captured by Tommy Ton in every fashion capital.

What’s a street without a protest? For his finale, Lagerfeld staged a mock demonstration complete with banners that read “Tweed is better than tweet”, “Be your own stylist”, “Make fashion not war”, “Free freedom”, and “Ladies first”, with Cara and Gisele on quilted Chanel megaphones screaming, “What do we want! When do we want it?”

Those street style snappers would have been all over it.

Spring/Summer 2015 Balmain

How to redefine power dressing while giving a woman a uniform to climb her career in – and one that can bring a man to his knees? This is Olivier Rousteing’s brief at Balmain, because this is what his army of rich, glamorous customers demands from their wardrobes.

The majority of looks were caged in graphic black leather lattice work, the dresses were long, lean, zip-backed and to the shin. There was a heady waft of Tom Ford’s Gucci in the supremely flattering wide-leg trousers and that high octane sexuality. There was a nod to Givenchy in the white trouser suit, the jacket cut away and knotted at the stomach, while the Mondrian colour palette recalled Yves Saint Laurent.

Yes it referenced collections that have gone before and of course there was a vintage energy here (it wouldn’t be Balmain without one), but on the runway these clothes became entirely modern: Eighties or Nineties or now – the sight of Jourdan Dunn slinking past in a pair of dazzling yellow and black flares is always going to be fabulous. And proof that while trends come and go, the desire to feel fierce will never go out of fashion.

To shop more Balmain visit: www.balmain.com or click below to shop the latest Spring/Summer 2015 Balmain collection:

Autumn/Winter 2014-15 Lucas Nascimento

Today’s autumn/winter 2014 outing from Lucas Nascimento showed us the possibilities when it comes to keeping warm and pushing the boundaries. To start proceedings off, he gave us a degradé-effect lamé ensemble, shaded in a way to give a flattering optical illusion.

This was repeated on dresses that came long-sleeved and floor length; tiger-printed and tank shaped; and in Nascimento’s favoured bandeau silhouette. It was especially effective in the mustard yellow polo neck and pencil skirt ensemble and lilac and gold ombré python designs.

All this rough and subtly-sparkling texture was neatly juxtaposed by the smoothest of leather which was worn from head-to-toe and looked so luxurious. It was a sleek show that was nothing short of a texture fest.

To shop more Lucas Nascimento visit: www.lucasnascimento.com or click below to shop the latest Autumn/Winter 2014-15 collection:

Autumn/Winter 2014-15 Alexander Wang

MEMO to Wang: travelling into the deepest depths of Brooklyn on an icy Saturday night doesn’t put show-goers in the best of moods. It transpires that his show venue is so remote that it doesn’t even show up on Sat Nav. And so, in a not-so-fun game of the blind leading the blind, a convoy of town cars circle streets in search of Wang autumn/winter 2014. As the cars pulled up to the elusive Ship Way Avenue, passed 9pm, more than half an hour later than scheduled, a collective this-had-better-be-worth-it rippled through Wang’s particular warehouse of choice.

His first exits set the pace. With hair slicked down, combed tight to heads, models looked like sci fi man-mannequins from a digital age. A series of stiff tunic dresses with hard leather collars were decked out in moulded 3D storage compartments, each one stiff as a board, they were reminiscent of the Utensilo shiny plastic organisers by Vitra that you see nailed to walls in artsy homes and offices, filled with stationery-like pens and scissors and other nik-naks.

Bags took on a similar feel, which were more like belts slung over shoulders streaming in flask holders, camera and iPhone cases. A place for everything, Wang fans will be vying for one come August. Next, came tissue-thin leather tracksuit trousers teamed with T-shirts rendered in purple Astrakhan.

Yes the finale of heat-activated looks that changed colour before fashion spectators’ eyes, while whirling around on a conveyor belt were pretty impressive too, but by then thoughts had already turned to the snaking gridlocked queue out of here and the pilgrimage back to Manhattan.

To shop more Alexander Wang visit: www.alexanderwang.com or click below to shop the latest Autumn/Winter collection: