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The BoF Podcast | Tim Blanks and Imran Amed Recap The Season That Was

BoF’s editor-in-chief and editor-at-large walk through the highlights and unforgettable moments of fashion weeks in Milan and Paris.
BoF Podcast Imran Amed and Tim Blanks
(Getty)

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Background:

Fashion’s Spring/Summer 2023 season was jam-packed with debuts, returns and chatter-inducing moments. Alessandro Michele was inspired by his mother and identical twin sister for his “Twinsburg” Gucci presentation which featured 68 pairs of identical twins. Rick Owens drew a dress from a 700 million year-old jellyfish. Dior and Yves Saint Laurent crafted elaborate grotto and fountain backdrops for their collections, while Dries Van Noten staged his Paris comeback in lockstep with Japanese designers including Junya Watanabe, Noir Kei Ninomiya and Jun Takahashi for Undercover — BoF editor-at-large Tim Blanks’ favourite of the season.

“To me that felt like one of the best commentaries on the pandemic that we’ve had from fashion — of everything that’s passed, everything that’s lost, everything that’s been lost,” said Blanks. “And then at the same time, the celebration with the fact that he’s still there.”

Key Insights:

  • In Milan, four major houses — Ferragamo, Missoni, Etro and Bally — debuted the first collections from new designers, with hopes to replicate the success big names like Tom Ford and Alessandro Michele have been able to create for Gucci, said Tim Blanks.
  • For Balenciaga, Demna staged a mud-drenched show with battered and bruised, hoodie-clad models that provoked an intense emotional reaction from the crowd, while Nicolas Ghesquière showed an energetic and future-looking collection for Louis Vuitton.
  • This fashion month, many catered to both in-person and online audiences to varying degrees of success. Valentino, for one, notably struggled with an element of the show just for cameras, another for people outside and an uber-long runway that saw a number of models take their shoes off.
  • Fashion traditionally provides a sense of escape, said Blanks, but it’s increasingly harder to turn away from the real world. Economies are deteriorating, Russia’s assault on the Ukraine continues and the artist formerly known as Kanye West put a shirt emblazoned with “White Lives Matter,” a phrase deployed by hate groups, on the runway.

Additional Resources:

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