The designer took signature styles and updated them with new material treatments. Balenciaga’s signature pointed runner, for example. was reworked in a linear raffia, with matching rope-style laces to match. To keep the style from looking too all-natural, Wang added a black elastic strap over the vamp for a modern spin.
Wang also focused on exaggerated uppers this season. Sandal styles received elongated uppers for a cartoonish effect, done in various patent or embossed leathers. The styles also featured a PVC panel near the toeline, which means that toe cleavage could soon replace last season’s heel fetish—much thanks to the mule craze.
While designers borrow from—or accidentally borrow from—each other all the time, it is worth noting that the stretched upper is a treatment Francesco Russo has presented for a few seasons now. Is it a coincidence? Surely it must be considering Wang’s access to Balenciaga’s archival styles, which he often loves referencing.