Teeny, tiny miniskirts, heavy kohl-lined eyes, shrunken leather jackets, androgynous models, and a rock soundtrack — all the trappings of a Saint Laurent show were firmly in place for Fall/Winter 2015. Yet, this season, there were enough differences to point to Hedi Slimane’s slight evolution as a designer. For instance, he experimented with more exaggerated volumes on skirts and added length to supremely tight-fitting mini dresses with chiffon fans and space age, peaked ruffles. Twee elements, like dainty schoolgirl bows, were juxtaposed with aggressive shredded elements, like chewed-up fishnets, adding equal parts to the scale of androgyny. It was all very Hedi, but not very heady, something we’ve come to expect from the designer whose market has become very well-off (thanks in large part to boosted accessories sales), but still very niche. He’s designing for the club crowd, which may seem like an affectation if one doesn’t know how sincerely obsessed this designer is with musicians and their rebellious, rock ‘n’ roll lifestyles. If you don’t fit the bill, don’t worry; this ambitious 120-piece collection had some trusty takeaways that hold democratic appeal.
This ambitious 120-piece collection had some trusty takeaways that hold democratic appeal.
Slimane first chose to highlight contrasts by pairing shrunken leather jackets with sparkly dresses (which came with tulle tutus in disheveled layers). Compact little suits came next, followed by shaggy metallic furs, striped knitwear, tweedy jackets, glossy leather jumpsuits, and a huge range of fitted jackets. He showed lots of skin, with mini skirts and mini dresses that ended right at the top of the thigh, sheer frocks with strategically placed opaque panels, and one-shoulder dresses that revealed all. Since his balance lies between the body-conscious and the covered-up, the collection mostly revolved around tiny frocks and cold-weather pairings, like bombers, parkas, and trenches. Looks simply oozed with sexuality, but were at times so unnecessarily revealing as to be off-putting. Yet, for all the brazen flash of the collection, one can’t help but feel that these pieces will do well in stores. After all, Saint Laurent is cornering the youth market in ways that other designers only dream of, especially with clubgoers who don’t mind dropping a pretty penny for a perfect party frock.
Photos: Courtesy of Imaxtree