ÿþSure, the Balenciaga of today fila women shoes can no longer be the "very soul of discretion", as writer and chief curator of fashion and textiles at the Musée des Arts Décoratfs in Paris, Pamela Golbin, said, but it can still be looked to as arbiter of style with strength. Balenciaga today has captured the shape of things now, and possibly, to come. On the surface, Mr Gvasalia may have disregarded the traditional Balenciaga shapes, but he has not abandoned shapes. Not one bit. Sure, these are not forms associated with the couture of yore, but they are those that ring as alluringly as a cocoon coat, only now they fall with an insouciance that is in step with a preference for the relaxed and the less studied.
Despite the odd way to fasten an outer also applied to a toggle coat, a pea coat, and a bubble coat (that was styled in such a way that the model looked like a gypsy awaiting the kindness of tourists during winter), Mr Gvasalia showed a surprising number of instantly appealing looks that made this collection his best to date. We will be the first fila men shoes to admit that when his Balenciaga first appeared, we were perplexed. But when your lenses are refocused, sometimes things become a little clearer, if not lucid. Now, with homage to hookers of yore rife at other French houses, Mr Gvasalia's flying off on a tangent seems oddly appealing. We were especially drawn to the oversized pencil as well as pleated skirts, worn rather, belted fila shoes for men in such a way that the excess fabric at the waist folded forward as a flap.
There was a sense of nostalgia in the tented dresses that recall the couture master's baby doll versions. Is imagining women actually wearing these approachable clothes a no-no? If not, let's do. Balenciaga in its heydays was the man to go to for women who wanted something special. The clothes that were made and bought were actually worn. If fashion lore is to be believed, the Countess von Bismarck, former Mona Harrison-Williams, the Kentucky-born socialite, wore only Balenciaga, even when gardening. If fashion legend Diana Vreeland is to be beloved, "The Kentucky Countess" ensconced herself in her Capri villa for three days when Cristóbal Balenciaga closed his atelier in 1968 presumably, fila grant hill to mourn. Wearability was not taboo at the house of Balenciaga. If Mr Gvasalia's latest season is any indication, he's restoring Balenciaga's to its rightful pro-customer place.
As if to proof this point, he showed a capsule of nine dresses that was ode to the Balenciaga couture of yesteryear: the icing on the 100th anniversary cake. These would have been familiar to those enamoured with the Balenciaga of the '50s and '60s, such as the Countess von Bismarck, if not for the models' streetwise gait. Although their carriage (did they even know they were wearing couture ?) wasn't the same as those from 80 years, these dresses won't disappoint the camera-toting horde that is Mr Gvasalia's peer. Mainly updates of the baby doll, as well as the flounced and tiered dresses, they were made charmingly irreverent by the pairing of a matching, oversized shopping bag to each, reminding us that this was 2017.
Mr Gvasalia is not obligated to continue from the last, now-forgotten look. The aim, it seems, is to create seismic change, as seen at other fashion houses. Heritage is immaterial. Who's talking about Tom Ford's legacy at Gucci when Alessandro Michele is making (tidal) waves? Even Balenciaga is emancipated from Nicolas Ghesquière's significant contributions to the revival of the brand. It's now really about what Demna Gvasalia can bring to the table, and what he can do to capture the attention of an easily sidetracked and loyalty-uncommon world. Likeability is not as important as newsworthy. Offering two extremes is the way Balenciaga could hit the headlines, or sent social media agog with wild excitement.
His debut at Balenciaga reflects the prevalent attitude towards fashion. These are clothes fila sandals that cannot be categorised, consisting different elements and influences, composed for camera lenses, whether those in front of the smartphone or the filter-fitted zooms of street-style photographers. It is not a stretch to imagine Anna Dello Russo wanting them now, so that she can wear them in Tokyo next week to attend an editorial meeting at Vogue Japan, and be photographed along the way. Mr Gvasalia's clothes for Balenciaga need a second viewing for them to sink in, even if not deeply. There's the temptation to seek out the signatures of Vetements, a label Mr Gvasalia established in 2013.
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