“Le Military Chic”.


It all felt very chic and compelling, the collections of fall 2009 that is: an amalgamation between constrictive sensibilities and a soft approach. Best characterized by the military references present in many of the Paris collections, except stripped of their austerity. it was a new fashion forward approach on Cold War bureaucracy(Dries Van Noten, is that you?).

This season belted trenches, epaulets, trousers tucked into high lace up boots, strong shoulders and drastic proportions graced the runway. An austere approach cum soft tailoring, volume, and form fitting silhouettes, resulting in ; “le military chic”.

Dries Van Noten showcased his fall of 2009 collection at the French Communist Headquarters in Paris. This particular location, a sort of metaphor for the designer’s latest. A collection reminiscent of The Cold War with it’s masculine and vigorous appeal. The military inspired collection featured an array of belted trenches and double breasted jackets paired with pleated trousers all set to somber shades of blues, grays, and even red. Van Noten ran the risk of creating looks that would come off as too strong as if menswear wasn’t already constricting enough. But Dries knew where he was going with this one, bringing in the chic with oversized bags, modern fabrics and subtle touches like the contrasting white cover on some of the collars.


Antonio Marra’s debut at Kenzo came with military inspired coats and suits. The long-johns, belted trenches and oversized knits which composed the collection conveyed a youthful and even hip feel. This represented another collection in which masculinity was intertwined with opposing elements. Trousers were tucked into boots and bags were used to accentuate . Full throttle chic!


At Moschino, trousers tucked into boots seemed to balance the dandy looks up top. Moschino offered an ode to old English dressing inspired by surrealist artist Renee Magritte, a nod to traditional menswear. The English gents walking the runway donned military jackets, ponchos and zippered combat boots.


And no review of Paris coulg go without the mentioning of Lanvin’s collection for fall 2009, a collection with undeniably set the tone for the entire season. The military-school boy looks of Lucas Ossendrijyer made up one of the best collections of the runway season. Here, there were pants tucked into boots paired with feminine touches like a silk neck scarf. Again austere looks less the vigorous result. Ossendrijver even created a new silhouette different from that of last season with belted coats and defined waists. Suddenly the Lanvin man has become the exact opposite of the Lanvin girl, this after Ossendrijver adopted the signature panache of Elbaz. Military chic wasn’t the only way in which this collection struck gold. Ossendrijver and Elbaz were able to capture the exact sense of optimism that has taken the industry, better said; the rest of the world. So much that they sent an Obama look-a-like waving down the runway. Brava!


2 Responses

  1. This blog keeps on getting better and better.

    • Thanks, I’m very glad you think so!

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