Fashion
  • Text Lakeisha Goedluck
  • Photography Sara Cimino
  • 20th January 2020

Beach birds

If any city is known for its architectural richness, it’s Paris. In the northeastern region of the capital, France’s National Dance Centre is situated — abbreviated as the CND, the brutalist building played temporary host to a pair of unruly skateboarders. Seen on Lanvin’s Instagram racing their way down the monolith’s slanted walkway, this season, the brand’s offering was all about honouring a relentless sense of adventure.

Titled Beach Birds after a choreographed piece by American dancer Merce Cunningham, creative director Bruno Sialleli wanted his models to move “like a flock of birds enjoying themselves on the seashore,” as the show notes read. In fact, the collection was the culmination of a variety of source material: photographer Hugh Holland’s images of 70s skateboarders combined with Hugo Pratt’s comic book hero Corto Maltese for a line that was an ode to inhibition.

Pinstripe shirts were teamed with pant legs dip-dyed in bottle green and lemon yellow and then paired with boots in corresponding shades to give the impression that the models had been wading through water. Sophisticated evening coats in inky navy were finished with oversized buttons and leather trimmings — a direct tribute to Corto Maltese’s iconic naval style. Additionally, this collection heralded the return of the skater aesthetic that thrived during the early 00s. Ubiquitous during that time period, memories of DC shoes came flooding back thanks to Sialleli’s take on chunky-soled sneakers with extra-thick laces. As for the female models, oversized smock dresses ended in ruffles, while Gingham coats with knitted collars in sea blue and dusky rose felt deliciously quaint.

From holdalls with contrasting leather straps to box bags finished with opulent buckles, bags also dominated the collection — a necessary accessory for a trip to the beach, after all. And for a true touch of holiday style, mock Mardi Gras beads were teamed with shrunken hula necklaces. So, it seems that for FW20, Sialleli sure took his audience on one hell of a journey.