Paris Fashion Week: For Louis Vuitton, no logo is the new logo, and black is the new blonde

Show also sees Kate Moss return to the catwalk after a two-year break


The Louis Vuitton hotel opened its doors today to present its fall/winter collection on the closing day of a month of international fashion shows. Rather than the launch of a venture into branded haute hospitality from the luxury conglomerate LVMH however, this was a fictional hotel dreamt up by designer Marc Jacobs, who got in to the spirit by taking his bow wearing red pyjamas. Indeed, there was not a logo to be seen from the label famed for making such things fashionable.

The backdrop to the catwalk was a wallpapered corridor, lined with heavy wooden doors through which models, including Kate Moss returning to the catwalk after a two-year break, emerged. As each model entered, the audience was afforded a glimpse at the lavish room sets projected inside, some replete with the label’s signature travel trunks. This was all done with an air of the bygone days of the Thirties and Forties.

The show notes promised a touch of “une robe de chambre”, but there was more than just a touch going on here, with louche wool coats in the shape of dressing gowns and with rounded lapels worn belted over silk negligee style slip dresses in pale peach. In one instance, silk and lace French knickers were worn by Cara Delevingne with a woollen V-neck jumper under the deep grey of a fur coat. Mannish wool suit jackets were worn without bottoms, while fur-trimmed fluted sleeves and hems on dresses looked glamorously grand.

The hems of wool coats appeared to have been dipped in sequins for glittering effect, and later marabou feathers  too, before cream silk coats came out embroidered with tiny flowers and lined with feathers all of which had a boudoir essence.

The house’s signature LV monogram and chequered Damier canvas were noticeably absent from the show’s accessories, replaced instead with exotic skins such as waxed crocodile, python, marabou and goose feathers and mink continuing the trend of the increase of fur on the catwalks this season. Bags are big business after all, and this was literally the case at Miu Miu, which showed this afternoon, where giant tote bags and duffle bags, both with an ostrich skin effect, dwarfed models.

It will be the “normal” sized bags – in bubble-gum pink leather, patterned with stripes and spots, all in a structured doctor style or new half-moon shape – that will be the real money makers though. Presented to a selection of Hollywood actresses including Renee Zellweger, Zoe Saldana, January Jones and Rebecca Hall, Miuccia Prada’s collection was a hybrid of tomboy and ladylike. The opening look was of navy coats with sailor “jumper flaps” worn over vividly striped calf length knife pleated skirts and Victorian boots – with the requisite Miu Miu twist: a thick tyre tread sole on which models stomped along the metal grated catwalk.

Each look was belted at the waist, including the designer’s take on the bomber jacket, which was sometimes worn off the shoulder, sometimes in bright orange and sometimes more like a dress but always reaching below the derriere and zipped at the front. Smart looks of polka-dot wool coats in candy shades of yellow, pink and blues were more typical of Mrs Prada – who generally sets the trends in fashion.

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