Leandra Medine doens’t get Vetements and I don’t either, let’s have a rundown.
I couldn’t have a “so-called” fashion blog without talking about “Vetements”. I guess I didn’t do it early because, to tell you the truth, it took me some time to feel interested in them. When all the talk surrounding this french collective began I read some things and took a peak at the collection but to tell you the truth I felt nothing – “oh, another designer that loves to make oversizes, deconstructed clothes..“. Well, Vetements didn’t go away, the phenomenon kept getting bigger and bigger, but I didn’t pay attention to the articles until I read the tittle of this article published on Man Repeller – ” Confession: I Don’t Get Vetements”. This spoke to me since I felt the same way but until that moment I just thought that I felt that way because I hadn’t spend enought time really understanding the brands mission and concept. I read what Leandra wrote about them and kept thinking about it and then two days ago Vetements presented their new Spring 2017 RTW collection in the first day of Couture week in Paris and I decided to have a Vetements rundown.
Presenting in the first day of Couture Fashion Week is really big, a brand that does not belong to the Chambre Syndicale de la Haute Couture, that certifies the houses that can present couture collections in Paris Fashion Week, was chosen by them to open the fashion week in the Galeries Lafayette. Vetements is a RTW brand so this makes it a very odd decision but they’re not just another RTW brand, it’s a brand formed by a collective of designers, that are headed by Demna Gvasalia (former alum of Margiela) , and that are a pure breed urban style brand that it’s major features are jeans and hoodies. Vetements’s and Couture fashion are visually on opposite ends of the spectrum. It makes this choice by the comite even more poignant.
Make no mistake, what Vetements presented has nothing to do with Couture, I’m not saying this in a derogative way but it’s simply not the same thing. They presented a Ready-to-Wear collection four months before the typical fashion calender because their strategy, since the beginning, is to distance themselves from the standard fashion business conduct, they chose to present ahead because that’s when buyers are in town buying pre-collections and have € $ £ to spend (smart move) and they presented a collection that was made entirely of re-interpreted pieces of other brands like Levi’s, Brioni, Juicy Couture, Manolo Blahnik, Comme des Garçons, Reebok and many others. I love this concept, it’s consistent with today’s environmental conscious mentality and it’s also a design challenge, make something new out of classic models that already exist. The result is a quintessential Vetements collections, you have your over-sized Brioni shirts and suits, velvet cropped pants, long skirts and catsuits, denim overalls using the emblematic Levi’s denim jacket. The most shocking item are the thigh-high (or should I say crotch-high) Manolo boots for both men and women. #thosebootstough.
It was not the clothes that supported the choice of the opening show of the couture week, I think it was the momentum behind this designer collective that they thought would possibly atract a more youthful crowd to pay attention to Couture week and the press would certainly have amazing headlines “Is this Couture?”, all publicity is good publicity right? This is also an affirmation from the historic fashion establishmentsthat they’re aware of the changes in the fashion business and they are ready to adapt and overcome. My conclusion of all this is that designers that have a “out of the box” strategy in business or in product development are always welcomed and represent evolution, in that sense Vetements should be acclaimed but besides that I really don’t see myself desiring anything from the brand.
For more on Vetements, check out Leandra’s article.
SS 17 RTW