Paris Fashion Week day three: Givenchy, Off-White, Chloe and Schiaparelli's timeless looks

An outer space theme, couture detailing and the power of simplicity were the high points

Powered by automated translation

With the third day of Paris Fashion Week came more proof that brands across the board are refocusing their attention to creating clothes with longevity rather than to grab headlines. A trend already seen in New York, London and Milan, the shift towards timelessness and practicality is undeniable, with Paris shows now well under way.


At Chloe, creative director Gabriela Hearst doubled down on her planet-friendly credentials with a collection about slow fashion.

Taking Renaissance painter Artemisia Gentileschi as her inspiration, she delivered a collection that featured predominately monochrome, simple separates in black, tan and cream.

Cosy layering arrived as shearling bomber jackets over tulip-cut leather skirts, and lean, knee-length leather coats over equally long shearling gilets.

There were knitted trousers and crocheted dresses, as well as boat neck dresses in dark denim, black plisse or cream wool, with circular cut-outs mid-torso, held with brooches.

Leather featured heavily, cut into vertical stripes and stitched into vibrant yellow, black and cream, and as patchworked biker jacket and trousers in cream, taupe and tan.

The 16th-century muse surfaced only obliquely, as the clean boat neck, bishop's sleeves and volume through the hips. One dress in black and white had the V-cut waist of a stomacher, while another had a Renaissance-era cape — strings and all. The single look that was brightly coloured arrived with a bodice and full skirt, and featured patchwork in colourful embroidered squares that were a not to Central America.


New art and image director Ibrahim Kamara took over the position after Virgil Abloh died in 2021, and he knew he had big shoes to fill. So he went to the Moon (that was the show's setting) and back with this collection for men and women.

Looks appeared scattered with metal grommets, giving a vaguely space-y feel, first in all-black, and then in a rich ochre that echoed the Sierre Leone landscape where he grew up. The eyelets carried on, lending patterning and form — even covering the face of a model at one point — sketching out lines and contours across a hooded, cold-shoulder dress. They also appeared as the rippling hem of a tent-like gown, were embedded into a shearling coat and smothered skirts and hems to change the way things moved.

Off-White’s signature straps criss-crossed around necks, circled jackets, caught a kilt at mid-thigh and was even printed on to a men's blazer. There were space suit silver-coloured bomber jackets, overstuffed puffer jackets and a man’s all-in-one, and West African indigo tie-dye across a suit, a deconstructed dress and sheer panelled, kick-flare dresses.

Beading, too, appeared as a richly tribal shorts suit, while zips became focal points as panels on a flared skirt, edging around shoulders or as a liner patterning on deconstructed jumpers.

Strong, edgy and a skillful mix of West African heritage with London street style, the collection marks a new era for the brand.


Matthew Williams has steered away from the recent directional (read difficult) collections and back towards the backbone of the house, namely its tailoring.

As this season is shaping up to be one in which brands give up theatrics for wearability, Williams’s about face is both welcome and bang-on the money.

Oversized, boxy men's coats opened the show, darted at the waist for shape, and worn with wide-leg trousers and skirts overlaid with chiffon.

There was elegant suiting in soft lemon, slate grey and midnight blue, and lots of glossy black leather, cut into an open-fronted straight dress, a coat and a smocked skirt.

The second half of the show was less refined, with bomber jackets, cargo trousers and distressed velvet mini skirts all layered for a gritty, younger feel, before giving way to stretchy dresses in translucent lilac and pink, and a floral green brocade.

There was a flower-patterned chainmail dress that hung in a perfect cowl, and dresses decorated with fish lifted from an original design by the house's founder, Hubert de Givenchy. The show ended with a parade of slinky little black dresses, cut on the bias, and two archival classics with full skirts from the house's heyday.


Showing its first ready-to-wear collection and following the recent animal head furore of the haute couture show, director Daniel Roseberry was under a fair amount of pressure.

Yet, if he had been worried, it didn’t show, as he trotted out a sure-handed show infused with couture touches, but now looser, more approachable. The opening coat, with its nipped waist and sculpted sleeves, was lifted straight from couture, but now simplified in black wool with typically quirky Schiap buttons.

A simple culotte bodysuit followed, with wide leather cuffs and corset belt, and then a quilted pencil skirt, worn with a faux fur-fronted polo neck. A patent leather jacket and three-quarter-length trousers were edged with zip detailing, meanwhile a long, draped velvet dress was beautifully plain, save for a keyhole cut-out on the chest.

A simple double-breasted military coat had two lines of wonderfully mismatched brass buttons, as did a velvet tuxedo suit. A quilted corset, meanwhile, was matched with a bias cut, ankle-length skirt.

This show was the beauty of couture and the topsy-turvy world of surrealist Schiaparelli, simplified and streamlined for the real world, and it was magnificent.

Updated: September 27, 2023, 8:12 AM