LANVIN HOMME SS2016 Collection is contemporary and an aesthete yet does not follow fashion in order to follow the crowd. Lucas Ossendrijver, the Director of the fashion house’s menswear collection, always designs with a firm focus on the emotional. On Sunday morning in the courtyard of the Beaux-Arts, the models moved forward, decisively yet smoothly. As Flavien Berger sings in “Fête Noire” from the film Le Plus Beau des Voyages, the soundtrack for the runway show mimicked the journey in which the models declared their individuality, to stand out from the rest. The strength of Lanvin men's prêt-à-porter lies in this rebuttal against interchangeable fashion.
"I like garments which have lived. There is something very moving about clothes that tell a story," says the Dutch designer. For Summer 2016, Ossendrijver imagined a personal dressing room, one without confinements in order to display aspects of a wardrobe where a man would keep his prized items. All that matters is desire. In the same vein as the first look, black trousers are worn with an oversized grey polo shirt, reflecting the comfort we find in treasuring an old garment containing memories. The collar of a grey suit features a zip closure and a suit jacket resembles a denim jacket.
A utilitarian parka looks as if it has lived a thousand lives: patches and pockets are arranged asymmetrically on the fabric, with a python print on the lining and hood, yet always maintaining Lanvin’s essence of luxury. Inspiration is not drawn from any specific era, but jumps back and forth between periods and universes. A black Harrington jacket displays highly casual red sparkles, proving that Lanvin's signature sportswear is ever present. A sharp rock look is suggested with a black patent leather jacket, with futuristic inspiration evident in shoes reminiscent of diving boots.
A retro romanticism emerges from a very baggy aubergine suit or a long red coat. Trousers take turns to be XXL with fabric belts, or more tapered and form-fitting. Shorts are baggy or tight on the thigh. The palette is rather sombre, playing with grey and black, yet with the occasional appearance of very vibrant patterns: a jacquard where beige and pink clash, with half-animal, half-plant prints. The military element of some outfits (such as a three-quarter length black leather coat) is mitigated by the softness of very thin T-shirts or embroidered pink ribbon tank tops.
Some buttons are covered in material while others are left bare, revealing a metallic gleam. Outfits are fringed, but there are no added frills; on the contrary, these are the technical elements that the designer wanted to preserve. Just like humans, the beauty of the garments lies in their faults, their awkwardness, in what they reveal about the wearer.
White stitching leaves a unique stamp on suit jackets. The breast of a black shirt is covered in embroidered arcs, and one of these patterns turns up on the back, as if it had come to life and taken a walk. This laidback look is all about accuracy, but also audacity. The Lanvin house dares to push the boundaries of its tailoring. On classic jackets, pockets are closed with press studs. The same closures cover the collar of a black velvet jacket. "There is no ready-made formula. We must let accidents happen." The collection reconciles this idea of imperfection with the pure elegance of Lanvin by reaching equilibrium between the offerings of tradition and the height of modernity. The collection pays tribute to the Lanvin atelier, to these secret places where artisans fashion a myriad of shapes and outfits to allow men to always express themselves with style.