Translated by Elisa Martí
Balmain has wanted to introduce us to his new collection halfway through past and future times, and, undoubtedly, he has achieved it. Olivier Rousteing, creative director of the firm, has been the one to do it, drawing upon Pierre Balmain’s legacy, but without forgetting the current market.
ABOUT THE COLLECTION
Amongst pagoda shoulders, defined silhouettes, knitwear suits and neon colours; we found ourselves clothed on the last firm’s runway. These are some of the looks that have crushed the catwalk, looks that are adaptations from Pierre Balmain’s archive, connecting so with the firm’s past.
Both designers worked together within the firm, when, in 2009, Rousteing arrived in Paris and was chosen as Pierre Balmain’s assistant himself, creative designer of the maison at that time. And, as fashion does not forget, and particularly far less its past, Rousteing has wanted to continue that example and get inspiration from Balmain’s iconic figure.
Olivier Rousteing has had a whole decade of success, collection after collection, and so it was to be expected that this show would leave us more than speechless. He has achieved the perfect balance between past and future, and so he presented us on the last October first in Jardins des Plantes from París, his collection Prêt – à-porter 2021.
The final result was a contemporaneous runway, with classical pieces as suits, but with a more modern version; with straighter lines, more stylized figures, flamboyant designs, and colours and prints that would had never been chosen for this outfit category. From the most delicate colours until the most striking ones. Accessories also from the most classical ones to the most extravagant ones. A nostalgic, futuristic mix.
The show featured such iconic models as Sonia Icthi, Amalia Vairelli, Axelle Doué, and Spain’s Violeta Sánchez, who opened the show wearing adaptations of 1970’s archive looks. With no music, all that echoed was a recording of the designer talking about his contribution to fashion and his vision about it.
The monogram was more than present during the catwalk. We could find both jackets and bags with the house print, the print that Pierre Balmain made inspired by the labyrinths of the French gardens.
As we mentioned before, the 1970’s archives have caused a stir, but the classics of the 80’s have also been recalled in total denim looks. A step reinvented by Balmain, which was carried out in the form of flared pants, jeans, shirts and denim jackets.
As we said before, the models showed off their party looks in a brilliant style. The dresses and skirt and pant sets were all made of Swarovski crystals, ideal for shining and enjoying a night out that is typical of a special occasion.
UNEXPECTED AND INNOVATIVE
Balmain has outweighed himself with this show, and as if this were not enough, the young artist has wanted to prove his capacity to adapt to the difficulties that arise, and he has unexpectedly innovated a digital and futuristic plan; his proposal: a digital front-row. Rousteing wanted to exploit the world of technology and bring its art to all the firm’s guests and followers. Lights and rows of screens projected the image of influential figures in the industry through a streaming connection, thus creating the effect of an imaginary audience, without forgetting the brand’s followers, who were able to attend the show thanks to a live broadcast through the official Instagram account. Of course,they take into account all their audience, since they have published the show in the form of an IGTV for those who were not able to watch it live.
“Being forced apart taught us just how much we actually depend on being together. As we’re disappointed that so many of the #BALMAINARMY cannot be here in Paris with us, we’ve transported to Paris fashion week some of those who have been kept far away from us.” @olivier_rousteing WATCH THE FULL RUNWAY SHOW AT THE LINK IN BIO. #BALMAINENSEMBLE #BALMAINSS21 #LGOLEDTV
A series of screens displayed famous faces like Kris Jenner’s, Claudia Schiffer’s, Alessandra Ambrosio’s or JLO’s enjoying the parade from their homes. On the other hand, the parade also had people who were physically there, such as Jon Kortajarena, who was invited to the backstage, where he was broadcasting the whole previous moment to the parade from Balmain’s official account.
The show started with the appearance of several senior models on the catwalk, wearing each of the looks from the collection, to the sound of Frank Sinatra’s My Way.
Moreover, this last show coincided with the 75th anniversary of the Parisian house. And although it has not been able to celebrate it in style, the show will go down in historyand will not be forgotten.
Another season, Olivier Rousteing has managed to take the lead in the house, leaving us once again open-mouthed, and making the Balmain woman more and more chic.
All credits for Vogue, Hola! and Balmain.