Welcome to the Jungle

Welcome to the Jungle | MODE+MAISON

This regram from Maison Margiela’s Instagram feed literally took my breath away. And I was more than surprised to learn that the model featured is Hedi Slimane favourite Grace Hartzel.  With her shock of short, sharply cut black hair and silver nose ring, the former Saint Laurent muse is almost unrecognisable.

The incredible styling is the work of fashion editor and celebrated stylist Camilla Nickerson, and the image is part of the ‘Welcome to the Jungle’ story that features in US Vogue’s April 2016 issue, shot beautifully by Mikael Jansson.

See more images from the shoot here

Image Credit: @maisonmargiela

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LA Love

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Last week in Los Angeles, Hedi Slimane presented his latest menswear collection for Saint Laurent.  The Palladium concert hall on Sunset Boulevard played host to the designer’s autumn/winter 2016/17 show, which also featured a selection of new season looks from his women’s ready to wear line, to be unveiled in full in Paris next month.

It’s no secret that I’m a Saint Laurent fan, although I do always caveat any confession of love for a designer’s aesthetic with a need for their clothes to fit with my own. And while I still succumb to Hedi’s rock ‘n’ roll style, his latest homage to the 1970’s – think midi skirts and wide-legged culottes – is not for me…

However, what I did love about the City of Angels’ show was the designer’s menswear.  Hedi remained faithful to his signature skinny silhouette, which I’m always drawn to, but it was the jackets, and more particularly the detailing on the male models’ outerwear, that captured my attention.  Here a few of my favourites, on the catwalk and up close…

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Military Jacket

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Maquis De Sade Couture Jacket

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Imperial Couture Embroidered Coat

See all the looks from the Saint Laurent Los Angeles show here

Image Credits: gq.comvogue.com / @YSL

The New Femininity

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Frills and frippery are not typical fashion favourites of mine, but styled with a bit of drama, grunge or deconstruction thrown into the mix and that’s a completely different story…

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This ‘Day Dreams’ shoot by Craig McDean for W magazine, styled by Edward Enninful, is a case in point.  Showcasing some of spring’s most feminine styles, the soft ruffles, lace and delicate floral pieces have been cleverly transformed by the boots, a bustier and beautiful black coats.

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I would happily hang any of these outfits in my closet.  There’s just that little matter of cost to contend with.  Oh well, ‘Day Dreams’ in more ways than one…

See more images from the shoot here

Image Credits: Visual Optimism

Crowning Glory

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Saint Laurent Spring/Summer 2016

Inspired by Hedi Slimane’s ‘grunge tiara’, as sported by models on the Saint Laurent catwalk, here are a few of my favourite shots featuring headpieces with a regal  flavour…

 

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Amber Valletta by Paolo Roversi

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Kate Moss for W Magazine

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Hedi Slimane Fashion Diary

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Chiharu Okunugi for Vogue Japan

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Emma Oak for How To Spend It

Images Credits: Vogue Runway and  via Pinterest

Back to Couture

Back to Couture

Couture Feather Coat with Sheer Bias Cut Evening Dress

After Hedi Slimane showed his spring/summer 2016 collection for Saint Laurent in Paris last month, these beautiful black and white stills, of both couture and new collection pieces, were posted to the brand’s Twitter feed.

By ‘obscuring’ the models’ faces, these close-ups cleverly focus on the clothes, but the way the hair has been styled still gives each shot a sense of the person behind the image…

Back to Couture

Oversized Sprayed Silver Leather Sleeveless Bomber Jacket

Back to Couture

Oversized Python Skin ‘Gold Leaf’ Teddy Jacket

See more images of Saint Laurent couture and spring/summer 2016 ready to wear here

Image Credits: Saint Laurent

A Collection Before Its Time…?

Marc Jacobs for Perry Ellis

Vogue December 1992

When Vogue Runway replaced Style.com earlier this month, fashion’s ‘new’ online hub heralded its launch by showcasing a clutch of ‘unforgettable’ catwalk collections from the ’90s, the decade before they first appeared on the internet.  And taking the top spot out of the twenty five shows featured was Marc Jacobs’ now infamous ‘grunge’ collection.

When the then 29 year old designer sent his spring 1993 collection down the catwalk for Perry Ellis, it in turn sent shockwaves through the industry, and subsequently got him fired from the New York label. But years later, the mood has significantly mellowed, and the consensus seems to be that it was simply a collection before its time.

Marc Jacobs for Perry Ellis Spring/Summer 1993

Looking at the clothes today, it’s difficult to see why they caused such a stir.  But back then,  glamour and luxury ruled the runways, and fashion’s great and good found it difficult to accept a collection that was less concerned with design and craftsmanship and more about capturing a mood.

Revered fashion critic Cathy Horyn, then at The Washington Post, complained about its “lack of credibility” and also wrote “Rarely has slovenliness looked so self-conscious, or commanded so high a price”, while Bernadine Morris described in The New York Times how “A typical outfit looks as if it were put together with the eyes closed in a very dark room”.


But fashion has now turned full circle, and is less about creating that perfect piece and more focused towards reflecting the times. The commercial success currently being enjoyed at Saint Laurent has been attributed to creative director Hedi Slimane’s canny ability to capture the mood of the moment in his collections – while his clothes may not be considered revolutionary, it’s how they are styled and the attitude they command that have helped to make the label a hit.

Saint Laurent Autumn/Winter 2015

It’s now over twenty years since Marc Jacobs’ ‘grunge’ collection rocked the runway. And Cathy Horyn has just recently gone on record to reflect on her original review. You can read her very honest piece written for The Cut  here

Image Credits: Vogue / Vogue Runway

The New Couture

YSL Couture

The return of the house of Yves Saint Laurent to couture is no longer ‘hot off the press’ news, but given my current obsession with all things Saint Laurent (thank you Hedi Slimane), this blog just wouldn’t be complete without at least a passing commentary…

The famous French company closed its original couture atelier back in 2002, when Yves himself retired, and while the launch of this new line has been dubbed a ‘return’, with Hedi at the helm it is perhaps, unsurprisingly, not quite the return you would expect.

Firstly, pieces from the collection will not be appearing on the catwalk as part of the traditional couture schedule.  Instead, a series of black and white images, including those I have posted here, shot by Hedi Slimane, form part of a promotional campaign entitled ‘Rue de L’Université’, featuring models in the new couture salons.

Secondly, the decision as to which garments are to carry the atelier’s ivory, hand-sewn ‘Yves Saint Laurent’ couture label will be taken by Hedi Slimane on a ‘case by case’ basis – the new line will cater to both women and men and include day as well as evening  wear.  Private or custom made orders will not be accepted.

And finally, the label will only be available to so called ‘friends of the house’, which left me wondering, to quote The New York Times’ Vanessa Friedman, “Will positioning himself as the grand chieftain of deciding who gets to wear a YSL couture garment make Mr. Slimane, and his clothes, more attractive, or will it just make people mad?”  

Given that Hedi Slimane can currently do no wrong, in commercial quarters anyway, I’m sure that by creating a collection which has been deemed even more exclusive than couture will only benefit the Saint Laurent brand.  Time will tell…

See more images from the campaign here

Read Vanessa Friedman’s article in full here 

Image Credits: Hedi Slimane