PARIS, France — Lucas Ossendrijver’s Lanvin has made leaps and bounds since he sent foppish, romantic boys out in bow ties and washed silk suits in 2006. Today, it’s become an exercise in opposites: a way to coax the subtle and the unexpected out of menswear that is both corporate and classic as well as technically innovative.
Spring 2019 dealt with this idea in a most literal way. “It’s about contrasts,” said Ossendrijver, “hard and soft, flat and 3D, black and colour, back and front.” He applied these dualities to garments with an undone formality, creating a shifting silhouette where anoraks unzipped into elegant capes, shirt fronts came tacked onto jersey tee backs, and the sedate beauty of a topstitched black suit came disrupted by the pragmatism of a cargo pocket.
Hidden techniques are par for the course chez Ossendrijver and it took some in-depth explaining to reveal the way a petrol and malachite coat was entirely bonded and reversible, or the fact that he’d displaced the satin on a tailcoat and layered it with a zip-up fishing vest. Sound complicated? It was. But for all its slick urbanity and fanciful layering, the collection never lost Lucas’ light hand, and the calculated naivety his clothes offer to men still looking for new ways to dress down dressing up.