Yes, fashion can be weird. During this long, yet interesting and beautiful fashion month, we managed to see some of the most creative and strangest spring 2016 fashion shows, but also quite weird and unexpected design solutions and performances that we’d like to discuss in detail. The fashion industry as a whole can be so utterly strange. But then, what is the definition of normal anyhow? When we are younger, we look to the world as strange and not strange but what defines each category is our societal bias. Just because something is not the normal at the moment does not mean it will not be the normal in the future or was not in the past.
Once, wearing your hair in crazy styles and using wigs to enhance your beauty was the norm. If you did not do it, you simply could not be considered beautiful. Today, the opposite is the truth. The natural has become the sexy. Tomorrow, it can all change again, for better or for worse. So who defines normal? And who is to say that something that appears on the runway at a fashion show is not actually more in line with the norm than anything else? After all, fashion is a creative art and nothing is ever really what it seems in that particular world.
Art will always remain one of the freest of expression mediums. As such, seeing some wacky shows on the different Fashion Weeks has certainly affected us quite nicely. We love it! And what is there not to love about an airport style runway or acrobats on stage?
The fashion weeks began back in September, starting on the 10th and stretching into London from the 18th, Milan on the 23rd and finally getting to Paris on the 29th, ending the shows today, on the 7th of October. It has been a month of fashion and a month of a little too much fun. We almost can’t wait to see the FW 2016 shows starting in February now! We have been spoiled with too many good treats. And even if we won’t be buying them all, we can certainly enjoy watching the models sashay onto stage with often incredible, sometimes ridiculous outfits, with hair and accessories to match.
We are looking forwards to seeing the first ever Arab Fashion Week coming up in a few weeks, while we always look forward to Porto, Rome, Sao Paulo, and Berlin as well. After all, while the four this past month were the most prominent of them all, that is certainly not where the fashion ends. Some of the greatest artists in the world do not appear at New York or London, Milan or Paris. We must seek them out for more, for better and for the best among the creative arts when it comes to this particular industry.
Among the most creative, and often strange appearing spring 2016 fashion shows to get up onto stage included:
1. Rick Owens’ Human Backpacks
When it comes to wacky shows full of acrobatic themes, it appears Rock Owens had it nailed down, the spring 2016 show presenting models carrying their colleagues upside down in body harnesses across the catwalk. It was an intriguing play on the ideal of “nourishment, sisterhood and motherhood, and regeneration” that we witnessed here and we can certainly say that casting director Angus Munro did a good job in portraying the strength of a woman thus. There is a story to be told and apparently an arresting balancing act is the right way to portray the plot. Hey, it got him to look for sturdier models though and that is something we always love to see!
2. Tom Ford’s Disco Dance Party
Ford decided to fully forgo a runway actually, instead opting for a music video to show off his latest collection. The American designer on the Paris Fashion Week was hot! And he was definitely giving the crowds and fans what was wanted. A gorgeous visual that can be shared online. “Having a runway show has become so much about the creation of imagery for online and social media, and watching a filmed fashion show can be like watching a filmed play.” Yes, my friend, you certainly got creative here and having Lady Gaga on the screen only added to the designer appeal. There is more movement to the clothing this way, a better view of it all and the excitement seems to still be the same. Bravo, we say.
3. Anrealage’s Digital Magic
Okay, this was just plain freaky… and somehow in line with modern art. If we have noticed anything, it is the abstract forms that modern artists use to create their designs. We have noticed faceless people, sometimes headless even, or with unattractive blobs on top. And then there was the whole smartphone business. You needed to take a picture at the show, with a flash, in order to really see the magic happening on stage, the flashes revealing hidden patterns reflecting from what would normally look like simple knitwear. It was innovative and smart and very much in tune with modern art, designer Kunihiko Morinaga making it all appear as if we stepped into a surreal world. It was amusing, but we wonder at its real life applications.
4. Ashish Goes Glittery and Gender-Bender
Sequins are an Ashish thing. They are more than just an Ashish thing. They are what make Ashish for us in our minds. Ashish and sequins simply go together like two peas in a pod. And then he adds skateboards. Sequins and skateboards get thrown in together and suddenly we are looking at something very different, redefining the boundaries of masculinity and femininity. Fairy dust was splattered on the garments and the skateboard proved to be the new handbag here. Add some glittering capes and you have a very amusing and fun collection.
5. Yohji Yamamoto’s Mourning Show
While we cannot call this collection wacky or strange really, other than a few dresses and looks that made the girls look like they were the umbrellas instead of just holding the accessory, we can certainly call this collection melancholy. It is creative in a manner others have not been, picking up on the negative emotions instead of just the fun and happy others focus on. The lady here appears to be a fallen princess, a woman who has seen hardship and yet can still look incredible. Even women in mourning need the proper clothes and Yamamoto seeks to fulfill that very command.
6. Chanel Airlines
It is called a runway after all! There was a stunning cast of models, including Kendall Jenner on the Chanel spring 2016 runway show where the catwalk was turned into an airplane strip. This is Karl Lagerfeld’s vision of what an airport should be like and the style in which to travel, the stage complete with lounges, smiling staff, gorgeous luggage handlers and gate signs. It was extravagant, over-the-top and so very lovely to watch as this time we were not the ones flying about and clocking in the miles. First class seats anyone? It was most certainly one of the most creative fashion runways seen yet this year. Buckle your seatbelts everyone, Chanel airlines is about to take its first flight!
7. Chalayan’s Melting Shower
Have you ever seen clothing melt on a runway? Yeah, we know you were as surprised as we were to see that liquid melting up the clothes, the coats especially. Ladies in lab coats appeared on the runway only to be rained on, the groundbreaking designs making Hussein Chalayan such a star in the world of fashion. The melting lab coats gave way to gorgeous black and white Swarovski crystal embellished dresses. After a decade of collaboration with the crystal brand, it was to be expected really. And boy did we fall in love over and over again as the rain washed away the plain and revealed the stunning. Nothing beats a good magic show and Chalayan supplied it by the buckets. The Cyprian-born Brit has sent tongues wagging and we cannot wait to see what ingenious designs he conjures up next.
8. Jacquemus’ White Horse
This is a designer that you either love or hate. No matter what though, he is the fashion golden boy, this Simon Porte Jacquemus and he does know how to put on a good show; at least if rolling a huge red ball across stage means anything. It symbolizes his red nose apparently, something to do with his personal life. Add a horse onto stage making its own cameo. The stage itself was circular, not the typical long and straight runway. And then there was the whole deconstructed clothing thing happening that made it weird, awesome, creepy and creative all at the same time. This was certainly a creative show, even if not our favourite to be seen in Paris. He may be 25, but the boy sure shows promise.
9. Dolce & Gabbana’s Runway Selfies
The latest fad is taking a selfie. There are all sorts of memes connected with it too these days, including a clip seen a week back where a boyfriend can get his girlfriend to stop an argument to pose for a selfie before she continues on again. We are more than sure that a few of those selfie taking models from the Dolce & Gabbana show will be making it onto memes as well. There was a whole lot of social media love as the models were taking pictures with everyone, everywhere, with just the right pout and everything. The show was called “Italia Is Love” and sure enough that is what we saw. It seemed to be an extension from last season, with a more modern, couples’ oriented twist.
10. Moschino’s Construction Zone
It was a construction zone. Literally. Moschino went from its last season’s graffiti induced roller coaster stage to a construction zone for the spring that included a car wash the models were put through, the whole show in reference to road traffic. Lots of toots and beeps about. Tire marks were decorative, traffic cones became hats and bags and there were stop signs as arm candy. Mechanic tools were everywhere and the hardware of choice it seemed. Jeremy Scott is creative all right and he loves to hype things up, which makes for a very amused and highly appreciative crowd of onlookers waiting for his next step. It was everything that we really expected and a whole lot more.
Photos courtesy of Vogue