Balmain has always been influenced by French icons of centuries past. After the fashion house’s Fall 2016 menswear show just days ago, Olivier Rousteing and the gang were back again for the women’s Pre-Fall wares: some of which strutted down the catwalk during the showstopping menswear assemblage.
Jeanne Antoinette Poisson, Marquise de Pompadour—the official chief Mistress of Louis XV—was one of the inspirations for the collection, along with The Palace of Versailles. Those influences came through in beautiful embroidery made modern with cropped, high-waist, and form-fitting silhouettes, lavish buckles on waist-cinching belts, hand-held clutches, and velvet booties, exaggerated hip boning for impossibly-snatched bodies, and corsetry that would make the Queen’s court circa 1745 green with envy.
The November terrorist attacks were also one of Rousteing’s motivations, as the night left an indelible impression on anyone who not only lived in the city, but loved it and its people. The Creative Director told VOGUE.com “Paris is the City of Light, and I want to switch on the lights again.” Pieces like a colorful fringed pearl and crystal embellished mini dress with cutout shoulders and a netted green floor-grazing gown with the same aforementioned fringe and embellishment made a great case for that illumination.
Balmain girls love to show skin. They’ll be able to do that this season with thigh-grazing hemlines, sheer and sultry lace, halter necklines, and high-waists. A bandage LBD with a hook-and-eye front screamed “Kardashian”, while a strapless little black dress with overstated hip boning and a lace inset is timeless enough to last in any woman’s wardrobe for years to come: if she loves showing off her toned gams at every turn.
Many designs had such high technicality and craftsmanship involved that one couldn’t help but think of Couture. Rousteing gave a slight indication that the prospect was on the horizon. Only time will tell if the labor-intensive feat comes to fruition.
So what’s next for the fashion house? It just announced its children’s line, which we know North West and the Beckham kids most likely already have hanging in their closets. In the meantime, we’ll just have to be satisfied with all of the starlets sporting these designs on the red carpet over the next few months. A black and gold velvet fringe number will stand out at the GRAMMYs next month, while a silver fringe stunner is sure to grace one of the many Oscar parties in just a few weeks.
Are you feeling the latest from Balmain?