- Text Lakeisha Goedluck
- 4th March 2019
Whether it be a makeshift mountain covered in graffiti or a tunnel-turned-wormhole displaying glitchy computer graphics, Demna Gvasalia always curates a fitting – and thrilling – backdrop for his Balenciaga collections. For FW19, the showspace ceiling merged from cherry red to fluorescent pink to electric blue – entirely apt for an offering that was all about transition.
“The real Parisian of today becomes an emblem,” read the show notes, as Gvasalia presented a collection reflective of the tendencies and desires of the youth of the French capital. A diverse cast stepped out in designs that were made to adapt to every occasion; smart workwear shirts with double sleeves played up to conformist ideas but looked both casual and unconventional, while double-breasted blazers were fashioned as evening-appropriate mini dresses.
Hallmark elements of Gvasalia’s aesthetic of course permeated the collection. Outer layers were treated to exaggerated shoulders, whether that be an asymmetric longline coat or an oversized leather jacket which wouldn’t seem out of place on a character from a Blaxploitation movie. The now-signature ‘Balenciaga dad’ look also made a comeback – too-big shirts were styled with mid-wash high-waisted jeans, as models walked laden with handbags-cum-shopping bags. Additionally, the Eiffel Tower print that the designer introduced last season made its way onto a velvet belted two-piece that toed the line between luxury and loungewear. If this is how the French do it, Gvasalia, then j’adore.