Paris: Nicolas Ghesquiere can be counted among the design vanguards responsible for making two of the 21st century’s most pervasive cultural phenomena — irony and technology — parts of fashion dialogue. He is inarguably of a generation of designers prone to treading on the “it’s so bad it’s good” ground, and he remains fascinated with all things scientific, synthetic, and digital. The F/W collection he presented for Balenciaga dove head-first into the risky waters of 80s teen-tech and sci-fi, capitalizing on his knack for spinning gold from (what some would deem) thematic straw. Saturated primary and secondary colors in floaty silks were controlled by matte-grey (think early Nintendo) leather-backed coats. Pearlized finishes suggested hologram stickers while graphic, blouson pop-overs in satin evoked 80s film-fanatic collector’s jackets — worn backwards. It all added up to the sort of tongue-in-cheek sportswear that “80s babies” lust for, having been too young to look Back to the Future the first time. —Kibwe Chase-Marshall

Silhouette: Cylindrical / Slouchy / Loose / Boxy / Blouson

Color: Slate / Bone / Gunmetal / Black / Citron / Royal blue / Crimson / Rich camel / Rose gold / Nickel / Berry / Lavender / Cherry

Key Items: Graphic-printed satin pop-over / Sheer-paneled skirt / Wrap jumpsuit / Peeked-bustier dress / Shirred-waist full-legged trouser / Wrap-tie outerwear

Materials: Leather-bonded melton wool / Pearlized silk faille / Silk Chiffon / Plonge leather / Dense wool suiting / Ciré / Silk Satin

Print + Pattern: Zebra / Metallic leopard / 80s placed-icon graphics / Pixilated cheetah / 2-tone woodgrain motif / Edward Munch swirl abstract

Details + Trim: Elastic-waist shirring / Fold-back face reveal / Kimono sleeve / Edge binding

Accessories + Footwear: Whittled bootie / Whittled gilly-bootie / Spatted whittled-bootie / Robust-strap shoulder-bag


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