Paris 10/01/09. WireImage
>> This evening at the Ecole Des Beaux Arts, Rick Owens had a bit of a seating situation, leaving a number of guests standing and unhappy. One editor reportedly decided "standing is the new front row," and WWD later noted: "If you’ve outgrown your venue, move on. Otherwise, there’s no excuse for double-booking seat upon seat."
To a soundtrack of crashing waves and with Gareth Pugh front row (Owens attended Pugh's show yesterday), a stream of sculptural shoulderpieces, long loincloth-like skirts, slicked back hair (glue sticks were used to keep it in place) and crinkled metallic bubble dresses exited backstage. Suvi Koponen made her first appearance since her smattering of shows at New York Fashion Week, but most striking was Owens's sudden casting of models of color — Georgie Baddiel, Kinee Diouf, Aminata Niaria, and Rose Cordero all made appearances; his shows have been entirely whitewashed since the Spring 2005 season, when he also cast four black models.
If you know nouveau Balmain, you're familiar with its luxe, rocker aesthetic, and even more ferocious collection of footwear. Thanks to Balmain’s Christophe Decarnin, the Paris fashion house will get even bigger — if that's even possible – with recent collaborations. Balmain took its three-year relationship with Giuseppe Zanottti and signed an official women’s footwear license with the shoe designer. New to come is an upcoming capsule collab with eyewear expert Oliver Peoples, along with the possibility of a men's shoe line. “He is the master of arts, deus ex machina,” said Balmain's chief executive, Hivelin.
Balmain is said to have around 20 licenses all over the world, including scarves, small leather goods, and ties. In addition, its flagship boutique in Paris will undergo a complete art deco-inspired renovation next month, featuring chimneys transplanted from chateaus around France and authentic Louis XIV or XV parquet flooring – wow. Get ready for total, utter Balmania!!!
And, to see photos from Balmain's Spring '10 runway show, read more
>> Marc Jacobs May Be Married, Appearing on Reality TV Show; Louis Vuitton to Live Stream Show —Marc Jacobs and fiance Lorenzo Martone were planning on getting married in a very quiet ceremony at the end of August, but there was never any official confirmation. It appears that it happened, though: Style.com's Derek Blasberg Tweeted a few days ago: "Going for a drink at the new Mrs. Martone-Jacobs' apartment, then OUT. The wife's away this weekend." While we're on hearsay surrounding Jacobs, he has expressed interest in doing a reality TV show in the past and is rumored to be participating in an upcoming reality show dubbed Kept, pitched as a gay version of The Real Housewives franchise. One fact to counteract all the rumors? His Spring 2010 Louis Vuitton show will stream live Wednesday at 2:30 PM Paris time from the brand's Facebook page. [@dizzyblazeberg, The Cut, Vogue UK]
Nicolas Ghesquière returned to urban futurism for spring 2010, dismissing last season's draped cocktail dresses for skinny motocross pants, hooded vests, and ankle boots.
Cathy Horyn called it "graphic, tough and linear" and noted Ghesquière's mix of materials and textures kept the collection from not looking new enough. Suzy Menkes agreed writing, "It had the feeling of clothes never before seen quite like this, even if the first silhouettes of skinny pants touched on the geometry that the designer previously had drawn up for Balenciaga."
The beauty look—black shadow streaked like racing stripes and eyes smudged with florescent orange, blue, yellow and green—was also noteworthy, mimicking Ghesquière's pops of color tucked between leather tops.
>> With Laduree macaroons catered backstage and Rihanna arriving half an hour late to sit front row, Daria Werbowy opened (and closed, and walked in the middle of) the Balmain show — her only show for the season — in the gilded, marbled ballroom of The Grand Hotel.
Christophe Decarnin's strong shoulders and ripped jeans were still present, but gone were the '80s. This season, “it’s warrior women and the military, with a mix of different times and a touch of Mad Max," he told Suzy Menkes; stylist Emmanuelle Alt's personal style was prevalent as ever, particularly in the pants-and-jackets combinations.
Since Decarnin took over at Balmain in 2006, the brand's ready-to-wear sales have double each season, according to CEO Alain Hivelin, and next season brings an eyewear collection with Oliver Peoples. The brand's much-buzzed-about $2,000 jeans are priced as such because, Hivelin says, certain pieces receive hundreds of hours of embroidery or have been reworked up to 50 times before they hit retail. But here's irony for you: Decarnin picks up his own wardrobe at army surplus stores.
Rihanna arrived in Paris on Tuesday, and she threw herself right into the Fashion Week madness by attending the Gareth Pugh show yesterday in one of his rather revealing striped dresses. The edgy designer brought Adrian Grenier, who was there to see Gareth's zombie-inspired collection. Orlando Bloom and Miranda Kerr took a break from strolling and shopping for today's Balenciaga show, where she actually hit the runway. Rihanna was also out and about today, while elsewhere in Paris, Lindsay continued her shopping tour of the city.
For more Fashion Week photos, read more