Riccardo Tisci's last few collections at Givenchy haven't been rocked my boat. The embellishment that he showed for SS11 was beautiful, but felt like a step too far away from the signatures that we've all come to expect and love from him and last season, the accessories were definitely stronger the clothes. For SS13, though, Tisci was back on a track.
Like many other collections this season, everything was stripped back and the focus was on the clothes. The muted colour palette helped to show the pieces off as opposed to bright colours and embellishment, which designers have been known to use as a distraction. The lines were clean and modern and the black looks in particular tapped into the religious undertones that Tisci is known for; that and the metal collars that the models were wearing that felt like a fashion version of a priest's collar, of course.
With Raf Simons showing his first ready-to-wear womens collection for Dior and Hedi Slimane doing the same at the newly revamped Saint Laurent Paris, the Balenciaga show this week was a compartively quiet affair. For Nicholas Ghesquière, though, it was business as usual. Over the years he's mastered the ability to tap into Balenciaga signatures without becoming a slave to its archive and this season he continued to move things forward while taking a considered look back.
The collection was more sexual than we've ever seen from him. Inspired by a dress designed by Cristobel Balanciaga in 1968, ruffles appears on asymmetric skirts that came short at the front and long at the back with enough thigh on show to make both Anja Rubik and Angelina Jolie happy. But as you would expect, it wasn't straight up sexy in a Pucci kind of way. The sensuality was offset with boxy cropped tops and oversized coats and masculine tailored waistcoats that had K-Stew's name all over them. The moral of the story? It's not just a two man race in Paris.
We've known that Kristen Stewart will front the campaign for Balenciaga's latest fragrance for a while but until now, the brand has keep quiet about the details.
Today WWD reports that the scent, which is set to drop in September, is called Florabotanica and the campaign has already been shot by Steven Meisel and sees the actress appear wearing a floral dress.
Talking to the title the 22 year-old revealed that fragrances were not something she was ever interested in until she smelt the scent. 'I'm very lucky that I like the fragrance, because I would have done anything with [Balenciaga designer Nicholas Ghesquière]...and I'm a terrible liar,' she revealed. 'There is something natural about it...it's very alive. I think as a young person wearing it - considering that I've never worn a scent - it kind of puts you on this level of, like, 'Whoa, check me out'.'
While Chloë Sevigny's recent outfits haven't gone down particularly well recently, that hasn't stopped her from continuing to rake in on the back of her personal style. 'It helps me make a lot of money, so it's kind of important,' she said in a interview with BBC Radio4 yesterday. 'As far as my face in the industry, it has been pretty lucrative for me, especially [because I've done] mostly independent films throughout my career [and have been] able to do some advertising on the side.'
And it's true. Unlike many actresses that came up at the same time as she did, Sevigny has always marched to the beat of her own drum and it's worked. Heading the inevitable backlash that would undoubtedly come from her comments, the actress was quick to point out that she does actually appreciate fashion even though the shows are 'very high school' and 'not fun for me'. She rounded the interview off by praising Christopher Kane and heralding Nicholas Ghesquiere as 'the most talented person in the field today,' making it clear that she's all about the designers and less about the shows.
Mia Wasikowska isn't the only actress bagging a big campaign, as Balenciaga have confirmed that Kristen Stewart will serve as the spokesperson for their new fragrance set for release this fall. “Kristen embodies the modernity of the new Balenciaga fragrance with her unique sensibility and intelligence,” Nicolas Ghesquière told WWD.
Although Kristen has been frank about not being into fashion, the brand has always been one that she's been aware of she told the title. “Balenciaga has always stood out to me. Even when I first began to consider fashion and admittedly rarely knew the brand I was wearing, I always recognized and loved Balenciaga," she said. “It feels full circle to be involved with something that spoke to me then and of course continues to excite me now." She continued: “The brand is just cool. That’s the way it is. I feel drawn to it. It provokes on a number of levels. It isn’t afraid or contrived. It hits a very cool balance, always. Always pretty undeniable.”
Just as the who-will-replace-Galliano-at-Dior speculation finally began to die down, latest rumours have already talking again. The latest name to be thrown into the hat? Marc Jacobs, it seems. This week WWD confirmed that Jacobs' contract at Louis Vuitton is coming to an end and he's allegedly been in "serious" talks with LVMH bosses about jumping ship leaving Phoebe Philo to reportedly take his place at Vuitton.
Although Alber Elbaz, Sarah Burton and Nicholas Ghesquière have confirmed that they're not leaving their jobs, Haider Ackermann and Riccardo Tisci are still in the list of potential replacements. Bill Gaytten - Galliano's former right hand mind - is said to still be in the running for the big job after making it very clear at the brand's couture show that he's gunning for the role. That said, the collection received terrible reviews making his appointment extremely unlikely.
You can see these black Balenciaga biker boots everywhere and we have Gisele Bundchen to thank for them being featured in the brand's SS11 show.
"The idea was to have this crazy casting with Gisele and Amber Valletta and Carolyn [Murphy], and they said no for high heels," Nicholas Ghesquiere explained. "They were not used to walking with heels anymore. Gisele was worried; she would not walk with my heels ... I was already thinking flats and I was already preparing the flat shoes."
Yesterday WWD announced that Gisele Budchen was chosen to cover Emmanuelle Alt's debut issue as editor in chief of Vogue Paris, shot by Inez van Lamsweerde and Vinoodh Matadin.
After we announced the news on Twitter, many expressed their disappointment in the cover choice with many expecting Alt to make a big bang with her first cover. However, WWD reports that the August issue will be the first month completely under Alt's direction suggesting that the April issue had already been shot before she took over the editorship.
Balenciaga might be the future of futurism. Nicholas Ghesquiere's latest collection took urban, athletic elements and injected a bit of space age this Paris Fashion Week.
It was all about illusions. What seemed to be jeans were actually vegetable-dyed leather trousers. A hooded sweatshirt was actually made of leather and foam. Recycled fabrics and hemp weaves were even around to keep the futuristic but eco-friendly crowds pleased. All in all, these were clothes for a fashionable city warrior - someone with a tough edge ahead of her time.
"I wanted to do something urban," Ghesquiere told Style.com "No more history for the moment!" Well, Mr Ghesquiere, it doesn't look like anything's a do-over here.
If you think the science-fiction trend we've seen this season is anything new, then you are greatly mistaken. Balenciaga's creative director, Nicolas Ghesquière, has been chanelling the trend for the brand for the last few seasons. Known as a designer that leads the pack and sets the trends, Ghesquière played down his usual sci-fi references, presenting us with a refreshing change from the monotony at fashion week.