Paris Fashion Week Men’s began its six-day run on Tuesday, and it’s already off to a buzzy start. Here’s everything you need to know about what’s happening on and off the runway, in collaborations and on foot in Paris for spring ’20:
Mary Alice Malone has launched her first men’s collection and it’s all about the loafer. They come in patent, pony, embossed velvets and woven leathers, each bearing the hallmark double strap that is the label’s DNA. “Just as the Malone woman is a very feminine woman, I wanted our man to be a very masculine man. We were very careful that it was a man’s last and that the lines were very manly. I never wanted it to be a women’s shoe for men,” the creative director told FN today at her presentation. So who is the Malone man? “Idris Elba,” she laughed, “I’d love to see him wearing them with a tux on the red carpet.”
The Celine man has loosened up and got his mojo on. Tonight in Paris, in the now customary, custom-made Celine box that constitutes his show venues, Hedi Slimane got groovy. First look, a suit with skinny tie, had a hint of sparkle and tassel loafers, which emerged from a contraption like a time-machine in a ’70s movie, set the tone.
The designer imagined three gangs for spring: the sporty guys, adventure guys and the dandies. Each had their own style and their own shoe-drobe. The sporty contingent wore sneakers, like the new Vision with its off key geometric heel while the adventurers stepped out in desert boots and sandals tied with nylon ribbon.
Hardy said they’d been inspired by Le Vieux Camper, a sports shop nearby his studio in Saint Germain. “Except were the young campers,” he joked. As for the dandies, they drew sophisticated slip-ons, super simple, devoid of laces or extraneous stitching.
He indulged in a spot of paddling last season, but for spring 2020, new Lanvin creative director Bruno Sialelli cast off his water-wings and plunged in at the deep end. Showing around an Olympic-sized swimming pool, across all three stories of Paris’ Pailleron sports center, he unveiled a vast array of summer-ready shoes, and every one was medal-worthy.
Olivier Rousteing X Barry’s Bootcamp
Barry’s Bootcamp opens in Paris on Monday and to celebrate, Balmain’s Olivier Rousteing has designed an ultra limited edition and ultra bling capsule collection of workout gear. the 105-piece line includes shorts and hoodies, the latter, emblazoned in sequins, coming with a call to ‘push your limits.’ On a regular day, Barry’s Fuel Bar will serve up healthy juices and shakes with names like Skinny B*itch and Green Latifah, but at tonight’s launch party it was supplemented by Barry’s branded Champagne and Run Lift Rosé wine.
No bells or whistles, or sneakers, just the ultimate simple sandals walked the runway at Hermes. Whether teamed with a striped blue and white pyjama pant or a languid trouser, the house wrote the playbook on summer footwear style.
Hot on the heels of his Birkenstock collaboration, Stefano Pilati’s Random Identities label has partnered with Li-Ning. Dubbed the ‘Chinese Nike,’ Li-Ning unveiled the collab today in Paris, opening its show with a troop of flag-carrying models wearing the new shoe. Each foot is fitted with a pressure sensitive LED which flashed with every step. Pilati lives in Berlin and the idea for the shoe was inspired by a combination of the city’s cycling culture and its underground club scene.
Vulcanized rubber originals Both Paris have debuted bags, wallets and luggage accessories for spring ’20 with totes, messenger and bucket shapes that are reassuringly functional. The Bella and Gigi Hadid favorite Gao sneaker now comes in a new Chelsea boot and a Derby silhouette and the season’s palette features sandy shades injected with flashes of acid yellow. New experimental cracked earth textures and rubber integrated with cork chips and natural jute complete the offering.
Sander Lak made a storming runway debut at Paris’ Bastille Opera House with his Sies Marjan menswear line. While the shoes teamed with the looks were not part of the official collection and will not go to retail, (just yet), they were a fitting preview of what to expect from Lak in the future as the collection builds. “They give you a little hint of the language and where we’re going to go,” the designer told FN after the show.
There was a whole lot of Nike love going on at Sacai. Chitose Abe previewed the next instalment of the Nike x Sacai sneaker collaboration, showing a small section of four pairs in black, in the middle of the show. However, spring ’19’s brightly colored versions were worn by at least half the guests. T-shirts with the words “One small step for man, one giant leap for mankind” said it all. They were made from newly developed Brewed Protein Blended sustainable fabric by Spiber and featured graphics by Fabien Baron. Similarly sustainable were pieces where the forms are cut with a two-dimensional approach, designed to eschew the contouring and fabric wastage associated with traditional pattern cutting. There were two additional collaborations as well. Archival prints of Hawaiian shirt legend Duke Kahanamoku done with Sun Surf and mountaineering pants with Gramicci.
Kris Van Assche created the ultimate fusion of sports and formal in his new Alexandra Edge shoe. The hybrid footwear with its contrast fluro sole was an inspired cross between a sneaker and a dress shoe. “It’s all about the contrast between tradition and being contemporary,” the designer told FN. “I refuse to think that Berluti should only be about timeless luxury; it’s a fashion brand, so it’s also for now.” He also found a novel use for the nails used in a footwear atelier to affix the sole to the upper. He used them as you might do with studs as a form of embellishment.
The naked shoe trend is already well established in the female footwear lexicon but tonight in Paris, Dior’s Kim Jones gave it a new spin for the opposite sex. For his spring 2020 Dior Man show, which took place at the Institut du Monde Arabe, reimagining a classic work boot in transparent form. From a distance it looked as though they featured a Dior logo but the branding actually came from the socks they were sporting underneath.
The fashion editor favorite women’s label launched men’s wear last season but today was its first official presentation. The brand is known for its better-than-the-real-thing vegan leather, used across both shoes and ready-to-wear. Spring footwear involved sandals and boat shoes with chunky soles and that supple vegan leather also cropped up in hoodies and track pants in delicious shades of burnt orange and nut brown.
With invitations printed on a Vetements branded condom, last night Demna Gvasalia hijacked a branch of McDonalds on Paris’ Champs-Elysees for his spring ’20 show.Looks came out considerably quicker than your average Big Mac order on a busy Thursday evening, the show represented a tongue-in-cheek commentary on the fast fashion industry, done in a very Vetements way.
The Louis Vuitton show invitation was a large flat-packed kite, and the footwear in creative director Virgil Abloh’s spring ’20 men’s collection was just made for flying it.
For spring ‘20, Mike Amiri evoked Woodstock ‘69 — the morning after to be precise. Suede Western boots and loafers in sand and dusty pastels echoed the colors of the collection worn by bohemian beatniks, while baseball boots in pristine white nodded to the season’s retro trend.
The great and the good of the fashion world descended on Paris’ Grand Palais to celebrate the life of the late great Karl Lagerfeld. The iconic designer famously hated funerals but we’re sure he would have approved of the line-up which included musical performance by Pharrell Williams and violinist Charlie Siem and dramatic readings by Cara Delevingne, Helen Mirren and Tilda Swinton.
“I’ve been motivated to explore my personal Mexicanness as a reaction to the US president’s fixation on a border wall,” the designer wrote in his show notes. Which explained the deafening Azteca ceremonial drummers. He collaborated with eco-conscious sneaker label Veja for the second time, on a hiking sneaker with asymmetric details plus “megalace” runners, in partnership with Thomas Houseago, the artist behind the giant sculpture in the middle of the Palais du Tokyo showspace. He also joined forces with Champion on a capsule collection of T-shirts.
Matthew Dainty and Ben Cottrell eschewed a more traditional show format, presenting their spring ’20 collection via a film which premiered online today. “We were really conscious of getting the right angles where you could really see the fabrics and the details,” Dainty told FN. “All the background environments you saw were from footage me a Ben filmed during a trip we made to Egypt. It was really important to use to tell a personal story and place the collection in context.”
In addition to the main collection, the film also premiered Cottweiler’s new collaboration with Reebok, across both footwear and apparel. The two brands have been working together since Pitti in 2017 and the spring ’20 shoe is the duo’s take on the Reebok 3D Storm with a new performance ‘Zig’ sole. Available in three colorways, the blue and pink models will go into Reebok’s inline. A black version will be a Cottweiler exclusive. The brand will launch their own ecommerce in September where the shoe will also debut.
Today in Paris, Christian Louboutin staged his spring ’20 presentation in the Musée des Arts Forrains, and the collection had all the fun of a fair.The designer was fascinated by the circus as a child and used to visit the museum, which is dedicated to 19th-century fairground arts. Alongside a talent for designing shoes, the red sole maven has another, less widely known, but equally impressive skill — he is an amateur trapeze artist. “It’s a very good workout,” he told FN during the circus themed party he threw in the evening, “because you’re not thinking about exercise the way you do when you’re sweating it out in the gym.”
Last week Glenn Martens told FN that it would have been easy for him to create hype with a Y/Project sneaker but that he prefers to go a more sophisticated route with dress shoes and interesting constructions. He didn’t disappoint.
Shoes with dramatically chiseled toes came teamed with the off-key silhouettes that have made his name and boots took on interesting geometric shapes thanks to clever cutting techniques. One of the male models also showcased a pair of Martens’ women’s heels carried in his transparent concertina purse.
Byredo Launches “Byproduct” Sneakers
Byredo creative director Ben Gorham has launched his debut sneakers. Dubbed Byproduct, the high-top styles were unveiled at a presentation this morning and modelled by a squad of current and former basketball players. “I’ve been wanting to make a sneaker since I laced up my first Air Jordans over 30 years ago,” Gorham told FN. Each pair is pieced together from leather left over from the production of Byredo handbags, making the upper of each entirely unique.
Virgil Abloh turned the Carreau du Temple venue in the City of Light’s artsy Marais district into a field of white carnations and the first shoe to trample on said flowers was a new Nike Dunk collaboration sneaker in orange and blue sported by Sheck Wes.
Alton Mason opened Heron Preston’s show with a tailored suit made of foam, created with the architecture firm behind the Salt Shed in NYC, where Preston did his first Fashion Week presentation in 2016. There was also a four-piece Gore-Tex collab, a partnership with Levi’s, plus lots of recycled materials from nylon to tweed. He also included a Nike collaboration that he created especially for Air Max Day. “The vibe was concrete jungle,” said the designer backstage. “I decided to invite a bunch of people who have been inspiring me, like painter Robert Nava, based in Brooklyn, who literally puts art on clothes. It was like creating a big family of collaborators.”
For her poetic men’s runway debut in Paris, CFDA Emerging Talent award-winner Emily Adams Bode introduced the ballet slipper for men. She teamed it with workwear-inspired suiting, hand-painted silk shirts and crocheted knits. The performance-culture aesthetic of the collection referenced her family ties to the Ohio-based Bode Wagon Company, which was commissioned to build show wagons for the Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey Circus.
They’ve collaborated with Puma in seasons past but for spring 2020 it was Timberland that got the Sankuanz treatment. White Timberland work boots came with a smudge of blue spray paint around the eyelets and a Sankuanz logo purple cuff to the rear.
During Alexandre Mattiussi’s Ami’s show, the tinkling of tiny bells resonated throughout the Grand Palais. But it wasn’t the soundtrack. Rather it was the jingling trinkets embellishing the high heeled boots, jackets and pants sported by the coed cast. The designer said he found it calming, “a kind of meditation, pretty and poetic.” He was right. A little meditation over fashion week is no bad thing.
6 Ways Paul Andrew’s Ferragamo Menswear Debut Celebrated & Updated the House
An Inside Look at Givenchy’s Unexpected Footwear Collaboration