In Paris, men's fashion is back in force freed from the Covid

In Paris, men’s fashion is back in force freed from the Covid

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Paris (AFP) – The first fashion week without any constraints linked to the Covid, the men’s ready-to-wear week is back in force in Paris with the very symbolic return to Celine’s calendar by Hedi Slimane.

The week will start on Tuesday afternoon with shows by young brands and will close on Sunday at 9:30 p.m. with the show of Hedi Slimane, one of the most influential men’s fashion designers of the last decades.

Celine, the flagship house of the luxury group LVMH, whose last show dates back to February 2020, has left the official fashion calendar, deeming it “obsolete”.

Since then, Hedi Slimane has presented his men’s and women’s collections, at his own pace and through films shot in historic French locations such as the Negresco hotel in Nice or the castles of Vaux-le-Vicomte and Chambord.

Post-Covid reunion

Asked by AFP about the reasons for this return, the house did not respond.

“We have no comment to make, except to rejoice. We are very happy that Celine is back,” Pascal Morand, executive president of the Federation of Haute Couture and Fashion, told AFP.

Louis Vuitton, another LVMH label which has not named the successor to Virgil Abloh, who died of cancer in November, will show the men’s collection designed by its studios.

Craig Green fashion show in Paris, January 19, 2020 FRANCOIS GUILLOT AFP/Archives

The lifting of restrictions due to the pandemic marks the return to Paris and to the physical parades of the American Tom Browne known for his creative shows, of the rising British star Craig Green who had landed aliens during his first parade in Paris in January 2020 or the Japanese house Issey Miyake which had presented its collections in videos or installations in Paris during the health crisis.

“Now that it’s easier to travel around the world, we think it’s the perfect time to be back with a fashion show,” explains the Japanese house.

Gendered or non-gendered?

A sign of the importance of Men’s Fashion Week, the American Matthew Williams, artistic director of Givenchy, will organize a parade as part of this week after having presented mixed collections virtually and in person.

The French avant-garde designer Marine Serre will be parading for the first time as part of Men’s and not Women’s Fashion Week.

Ami-Alexandre Mattiussi, who started as a men’s brand popular with trendy Parisians, now makes women’s collections and caused a sensation at the Cannes Film Festival with very glamorous pieces worn on the red carpet by Rossy de Palma or Sophie Marceau. The parade, probably mixed, will take place on Thursday evening.

French actress Sophie Marceau on the Cannes Film Festival red carpet, May 24, 2022
French actress Sophie Marceau on the Cannes Film Festival red carpet, May 24, 2022 CHRISTOPHE SIMON AFP/Archives

While London Fashion Week has become gender-neutral, Milan Fashion Week has, on the other hand, put men back in the spotlight this season by renouncing mixed collections which “risk eclipsing the men’s offer”, beneficial for companies. Italian major manufacturers in this segment”, according to Carlo Capasa, president of the Fashion Chamber.

“In Paris it will be on both sides,” explains Pascal Morand.

“The genderless trend brought about by streetwear and sportswear is deep and societal, it is long-term”, but the “male-female separation really makes sense”, he adds.

This goes without saying for houses that have male and female artistic directors like Dior or Louis Vuitton. But “things are moving for the man” and after years of fairly contained supply, there is “innovation and creativity” which deserves to be shown in a dedicated event, he concludes.

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