Maison Margiela Spring 2017 Ready-to-Wear Paris Fashion Week

Maison Margiela Spring 2017 Ready-to-Wear Paris Fashion Week

No matter how many years John Galliano has lived in Paris, he’s still an English eccentric. There’s his grand, poetic-historicist side, and then there’s the side of him with an eye for streetwear. He can’t look at a fashion rule without thinking about how to turn it upside down. The streetwear-disrupter Galliano was in charge this season, intent on the challenge of mixing up everyday clothes in ways we’ve never seen before, even at the risk of making nonsense of them.

Who said fashion should always be easy to understand at first sight, though? Puzzles tease, or torment, the mind far longer—and this collection was full of them, not that the vision was at all dystopian. Who were these figures that Galliano presented? With their earpieces and headsets, backpacks and Lucite-heeled clogs, were they humanoid space creatures from the future? Or more like a series of spontaneously composed happy styling accidents dating back to just a few minutes before the show went on?

No definitive answers were given, as Galliano—true to the house of Margiela—doesn’t brief the press after his presentations. Perhaps the actual key to it all was the beautiful, mint-color mackintosh that calmly introduced the show. It had apparently nothing to do with the rest: the inside-out and upside down raincoats; the scuba suit peeled down to become a tube skirt, with the chunky sweater rolled and draped around the neck like a giant shawl; the sudden up-cropping of an electric blue plastic crystal–embroidered skirt. But on the other hand, it was not all that difficult to imagine these pieces taken apart and hanging in a store, where they would appear just as wearable as that opening mint coat.

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