Continuing on with the theme of taking inspiration from your own store - or its location (as seen at Roland Mouret and Vivienne Westwood this week) - Louis Vuitton 'took it home' and based this season's collection on La Place Vendôme. The house pulled on both the past and the present. Military references and suiting, which women can 'dream of triumphing in' were an ode to 'when Place Vêndomes was known as Place des Conquêtes - Square of Conquests.' The show notes also talked about the t-shirts 'that reference the heads of the 18th century fawns, decorating the façade of 2 Place Vendôme.' There was also a lot of talk about the codes of the Left bank and Right bank. For sure, the ghost of Yves Saint Laurent - the fashion diplomat who brought both sides of the bank to the world of high fashion - drifted through the collection. It also connected very neatly with Ghèsquiere's own archive.
Statuesque draped greys and rusts, complete with shoulder pads, were teamed with gold ankle boots. Much more streamlined than in previous seasons, this collection saw Ghèsquiere given the space to show us some of his thinking. Designing for such a juggernaut of a luxury label naturally consists of answering a lot of commercial asks. Much more architectural and direct this season, it was no less effeminate and interesting.
Far less layered, with just one or two pieces per look, the design could really shine - both metaphorically and literally. Gold and silver sprigs of metallic foliage flourished across longline wrap dresses, full of Parisienne sparkle. With single arms and shoulders exposed or sliced, opaque and transparent panels were geometrically sharp and seductive.
Geometric insignia was also present in the shape of polka dot prints and monochromatic checkerboards. A gold sequin blouson jacket reminded one of Ghèsquiere's legendary Star Wars ode at Balenciaga. No bad thing. The Lycra military pants were beaded with gold - feeling both vintage and athletic. Adrian style tailoring was reconfigured for this millennium - and the leather bodies with motocross thumb holes were sci-fi in a Trinity from The Matrix way. Strong eye colours in purple eyeshadow and liner added a vampish edge.
Super shiny throughout, a highlight of the show was a lurex fabric, printed and dyed into a kind of rainbow python skin. Forties blouson shapes saw glamourous volumes pinned at the neck - a plain gold lurex sweater with voluminous arms was a key retail piece. Criss-cross shoes were also super chic. Even with all of the merchandise and paraphernalia, you can see Ghèsquiere. Whether it's a luxury house directive, or a collection inspired by a city, what we really want to see are creations designed by a person.