Haters of Vêtements often maintain that the brand offers nothing more than the most ordinary and banal items that belong not on the fashion runway, but in a neighborhood thrift store, like a DHL T-shirt or a pair of fireman’s overalls. The brand’s Fall-Winter 2017/18 collection – while pursuing its credo of taking inspiration from society’s most common uniforms – offered an ode to the stereotypes that are dormant in all of us.
Daniel Meuron Givaudan said: « The cloudy mirror of the banality of everyday life may hide a source of wonder. » So what if the aim of the clothing label is to magnify this banality, the one we encounter every day in public transport, and which nevertheless defines us and is an integral part of our lives. By attacking stereotypes with this collection, Vêtements knocks fashion off of its pedestal and drags it into the public square: the same space that accompanies it every day and witnesses its evolution. Questioning the ordinary and common gestures that we no longer pay attention to: that was the purpose of this collection.
Presented in the entrance hall of the Center Pompidou, the casting was like nothing ever seen in a fashion show: an older lady, a brawny bouncer, a middle-aged man, a grandmotherly type, and an older man. This is lightyears away from the typical models who paraded through the Couture Fashion Week. Every character from society was represented: the soldier, the bouncer, the rich old lady with her mink coat and sunglasses (in the middle of winter), the bride, the punk, and the secretary. The silhouettes are sometimes so ordinary that it becomes a game to guess who is hiding behind it. Nevertheless, there are certain details specific to the Vêtements style which accent this silhouette based on banality: overlong adjustable belts or layering of several jackets, like jean or down jackets for an oversized effect.
Far from prejudice or pointless caricature, the Fall 2017 Vêtements collection is a theater of society that brings us back to what makes us human: our differences and our personality. By questioning each one of us, the collective shows an interest in each stratum of society, without establishing any hierarchy. Unlike certain fashion shows that simply create caricatures of women (without bothering to represent contemporary woman), Vêtements shows us that we the people can become the real stars of the runway. In fact, the runway belongs to all of us.
Photos: © Vêtements
Written by Lisa Tomasi
Jan 28, 2017
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