“Saint Laurent is as much about attitude as it is spectacle,” said Anthony Vaccarello of his Spring/Summer 2020 collection and show. Saint Laurent has, for some time, hosted its womenswear runways in the evening at the Trocadero plaza in full view of the Eiffel Tower. At the end, the Tower’s lights are cued to flicker.
And so, concluding Tuesday night’s show, strobes of illumination sparkled on the world famous icon while bedazzled tuxedos and Le Smoking interpretations shimmered on the catwalk (including on a best-in-show double-breasted suit worn by Naomi Campbell). The drama was heightened by a co-ordinated spotlight show on set, which, in itself, was given an unexpected sultriness thanks to a post-rain mist.
Case in point: there was a lot of radiance for a line-up dealing predominantly in jet and smouldering eveningwear. As much as any other designer of the same habit, Vaccarello sticks to his guns. There is: the rock star sheen; the slightly undone vibes of a fabulous person smoking a cigarette outside a party; the glamorous amalgamation of unapologetic sexiness, unlimited credit lines and uber-confidence.
Spring promises exaggerated voltage in all of the above, those grand finale tuxedos notwithstanding. Seventies-era dresses will come embellished-upon-embellished. Heeled cowboy boots, standing up to just below the knee, will be worn with microscopic satin or suede shorts. Bits of leopard and snakeskin will surface, as will free-flying necklaces and silken tie-ons, but the cascades of crystals and the streams of sequins will be the main story. This is hold-nothing-back opulence.
Well done, then, to Vaccarello. In a season where the term “new minimalism” is floating around, this designer has made a strong case for investing, inversely, in indulgent maximalism. Given the proper care — and not partying too hard in one’s sculpted mini or one’s glimmering high-waist, drainpipe trousers — there’s no reason as to why a Saint Laurent addition couldn’t last for years on end as a hallmark wardrobe staple.
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