Are you ready for the impending coronavirus pandemic? Whether or not that was designer Rick Owens’ intended question for his fall ‘20 collection, many of the show’s attendees were certainly pondering it.
At his Paris Fashion Week show Thursday evening, Owens sent out apocalyptic platform boots, his signature footwear style for the past few seasons, with metal grate-like toes and accents. But this time, attached to some of the platforms were clear rubber uppers, which extended to the thigh. Matching them were rubber gloves, and a series of outerwear, all of which seemed to suggest hazmat gear.
Or maybe that was just my own paranoid interpretation, but I’m betting I’m not alone. As Paris Fashion Week trudges on amidst growing concerns of a global coronavirus pandemic (and one that seems to be knocking at the city’s door since all of the fashion crowd has moved from Milan to Paris), it’s hard to focus on anything else but media reports of outbreaks and growing whispers of whether the remainder of the week will be canceled.
It all makes for a very tinted view of fashion and the fall ‘20 collections. Owens has always specialized in his own brand of dystopian fashion, but this season it seemed especially relevant. A shade of cornflower blue that ran throughout the collection — on boots, coats, dresses and, yes, gloves — took on the feeling of hospital scrubs and precaution.
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Elsewhere, there was a series of gigantic duvetlike capes in blue, black and metallic silver. The puffer quilting trailed on the floor as models walked a runway swirling with smoke from a dry ice machine. It seemed to beckon: Use in case of quarantine.
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