Notes on the Paris Fashion Week 2023

An air of restoration, not evolution

The Paris Fashion Week 2023 showed precise, constructed tailoring and well-defined silhouettes. Perhaps brands aimed to provide a tangible sense of quality to reclaim their meaning. Or re-establish a higher positioning in an overproduction industry that left people baffled and unable to understand the difference between luxury to low brands.

Of course, if you were not interested in the star parade, avoiding the tedious crawling before, during and after the shows seemed impossible. Now, that is the goal. Unfortunately, no chance to talk about clothes, just clothes, without necessarily talking about the faces.

Paris fashion Week 23: some highlights

All about silhouettes and dark atmosphere at Dior and Saint Laurent: I line at Dior – very vintage. The 80s-inspired triangle shape with big hyper-constructed shoulders at Saint Laurent.
Balmain: sculptural designs with bows and pearls everywhere.
Chloé: less poor nomadic, still bohemian but more refined. Such a great inspiration, the painter Artemisia Gentileschi! The medieval theme has resulted in wearable clothes – more for real life than for Instagram. Here, we want to underline what the designer, Gabriela Hearst, said: “I like it that nothing is gimmicky. They’re not clothes for Instagram: I’m tired of working for Zuckerberg all the time – like, where’s my check?

Can you see the negative impact of social media on fashion? Now, designers make their clothes for Instagram, not for real life.

Givenchy: tailored black gowns with some touch of colours.
Balenciaga: for a brand that staked everything on marketing rather than clothes, this show seemed like an attempt to clean its image after a catastrophic communication campaign. 
Miyake: weaving rhythm, shape, slowness and movement. Beautiful!
Yohji Yamamoto: always a world apart, with a touch of colour this time!
Valentino: a 90s reminiscence for a black tie elegance with coloured maxi coats.

A lot of basics, that doesn’t mean banal. More wearable clothes, in general.
But do we still need hundreds of outfits to understand a collection? Aren’t 30 or 40 enough? 

However, rather than just referring to what we liked or not, we want to share two general thoughts about Paris Fashion Week 2023, reasoning we can extend to the whole fashion month.

Fashion journalism & fashion weeks

If you turn to fashion journalists expecting honest feedback and review about the collections, forget it. Indeed, fashion journalists do not express their viewpoints. They simply report the designers’ ideas and talk about celebrities, but they do not add any professional perspective. No pondering, which you may agree or disagree with, but still would generate a discussion, sharing some value. What they do looks like a report cut out for Instagram. So, everything seems flat.

In a hyper-consumerist and wasteful field as the fashion industry, the mission now is to do something different. Following the rules of what the fashion industry has done so far, and still commenting on the status quo, will lead to nothing valuable. In the end, the status quo is what designers showed.

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