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C’est Paris, Baby

The best and next of from Paris Fashion Week 2020.

Another week, another best of! This Tuesday marks the end of the (semi-)virtual venture that was Paris Fashion Week 2020. And we have to say… we don’t miss the jet lag! Tossing up all the presentations, shows and short films, we can confirm that we have some fave’s coming your way. Making our own selection box from the best of the year’s bunch, sit back, relax and enjoy PFW form wherever you may be. 

While Paris fashion week is always a whirlwind ride, Marine Serre gave us the inevitable goosebumps along the way. Her SS21 collection was presented via an interactive video entitled “Amor Fati” (love of fate). Watching it certainly gives off a fateful feeling, but in classic Serre character, “future wear” comes into full collision with the dystopian chaos that is 2020. The collection creates a strangely familiar atmosphere where visor-faced surgeons loom over flat-laid bodies, injecting intricate moons while we pay meticulous attention to their post-human transformations, in the sonorous anticipation of something beautiful. In the form of one of our favourites, Sevdaliza emerges in black leather-bodycon-wear amongst the beaded bustiers. Through each intricate world of Marine Serre, prepare to land within a transitional wold, but of course, under the same moon.



It was a good year for British designer Grace Wales Bonner, who made an exciting Paris Fashion Week debut with a series entitled ‘Essence’. The piece, containing not just the collection, metamorphosised into a film and zine as well. Taking its inspiration from 80’s Jamaican Dancehall culture, the series is a sincere meditation on the diasporic connection between Britain and the Caribbean. Since Wales Boner’s ever-critical eye runs between context to content, this three-part piece shows artistic thoroughness at its fullest. Calm colours that emit a sunny, epochal, feel were amongst our line of appreciation for the neat tailoring in the two-tone suits and meticulous crochet. G.W.B we love you! 


Setting up a breezy show atop Paris’ highest skyscraper didn’t stop Coperni’s IRL show from being a soaring success. The city’s home-grown brand made a splash with their SS21 collection, showing off clean, minimal silhouettes with a smart colour palette that was definitely looking forward. Featuring Pantone’s colour of the (next) year “Aqua” alongside all its complimentary cousins – turquoise, purple and orange. Hmm, I hear you say ….how can that work? Well, trust me, because Coperni did it first and did it well. Shapes slink along the runway in a 90’s dream, simultaneously slouchy and body-hugging. The six-minute video gave us just enough opportunity to drool over these garment forms.



Instead of a show, Y/Project gave us a full-blown aesthetic. Or, to be specific, several styles presented as a  “how to wear” lookbook series. For the French brand, known for a characteristic kookiness, skewed silhouettes and elaborately layered looks, this could have been a perfect way to show Y/Project off in their best light. Elaborate, intricate complexity lies behind the construction of each garment, and as we watched, et voilà, we are sold by the genius of the garment. Finding beauty in asymmetry looks quite easy when you have a stylist of your own/on your phone. So say goodbye to any temptation of a click on those capsule wardrobes YouTubes because Y/Project is here to show us we have OPTIONS. 


Ottolinger’s SS21 video displays a collection full of supernatural influences as pulsating heartbeats and screeching sounds flourish alpine forests. In this ecosystem, each model gives a careful quick look to the camera as it pans, because holding the gaze of holding one’s own is easy when you’re given a stately pose and strength emitting outfit. Fashion = empowerment and Ottolinger is telling us that it ain’t that hard to sprout wings or ears. From the snaked-heels up, each look conveys a total mood; ombre-tye dye meets a ruched crop top beneath the usual excesses of seamlines and fringing. This Ottolinger experience is the escapist dream we need!


Rick Owen’s collection came halfway from Hell. But what else would we expect from the Lord of Darkness? The title, “Phlegethon” refers to exactly that – one of the five rivers of the Underworld, the collection conveys a deathly conclusion to what some in fashion might refer to being a pretty horrorsome year. But I thought we knew by now that probably doesn’t dampen an Owens creative spirit. This year, the American designer brought incredible shades of bubblegum pink amongst the black. Leather coats and scuba-suitesque jackets were topped off by the global accessory of the year – the face mask. And while the shoulders size and boot-length came to an exaggerated climax, so did the drama. You couldn’t be left more open-mouthed after the dramatic entrance of the architecturally-structured capes. There’s only one question left on the mind. Is that Hades behind the visor? 


Words by Rose Holmshaw