Paris Fashion Week SS17: Maison Margiela, Dries Van Noten and Lanvin

Working out with Margiela, and meeting Lanvin's new woman

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Sport gets bigger and bigger

It's not surprising that elevated athletic wear is still so popular on the runway.

Many of us are still spending our weekends in yoga pants. And on the trainers front, it's hard to give up footwear that is just so easy to wear. After a week of sports references in Milan, it's back on the runway.

Maison Margiela SS17
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This time in Paris where it took on a more conceptual form at Maison Margiela where John Galliano mixed it with beautiful tailoring and weird and wonderful trimmings. He mashed it all up, the bits we wear for day and the stuff we wear for outdoor play, into one collection that ended up being what the press notes called 'a stream of consciousness from the artisanal universe.'

Maison Margiela SS17

That means sports mesh incorporated into florid blouses and drawstring pulls built into dresses (an idea we saw a lot of in Milan.) The 'athluxury' theme got even more literal with a scuba-inspired dress worn with a wetsuit hanging down at the waist and a series of yoga mats tucked into the brands hybrid 5AC bags.

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Maison Margiela SS17

But for the record, the most appealing pieces here had nothing to do with lycra or exercise at all: a pair of trench coats in the softest green (one opening the show, one closing) that were exactly the thing your transitional season wardrobe needs.

Yellow continues to be the colour of the season

Spring/summer 2017 has had a few colour stories, but yellow is one of the most memorable and upbeat, appearing in Paris at Rochas, Maison Margiela, Dries van Noten and Guy Laroche so far.

Dries Van Noten SS17

Dries van Noten used it to punctuate dark florals in a stunning show that deftly mixed Victoriana and Japanese prints. And because this imagery wasn't breathtaking enough, massive blocks of melting ice filled with spectacular floral arrangements created by artist Azuma Makoto lined the runway.

Dries Van Noten SS17

.n a strange season of hit-and-miss clothes, when fashion insiders have been complaining of fading originality, this moment stood out for its sheer beauty.

Dries Van Noten SS17

Glamour and femininity rule

'I love to dress women, to reveal them to themselves,' Bouchra Jarrar said. And this will be a big week for women doing exactly that with Jarrar and Maria Grazia Chiuri having their big debuts as the new creative directors of two of Paris's most iconic houses, Lanvin and Dior respectively.

Lanvin SS17

To say expectations were high for Jarrar's first Lanvin collection is an understatement; Alber Elbaz left awfully big shoes to fill. But Jarrar wisely didn't wipe the slate completely clean by showing a new vision for the brand that would alienate its extensive fan base. Instead, she showed a collection that heightened the sisterly, pro-feminism thread running through the month of spring/summer '17 shows with her celebration of womanhood and glamour.

What Jarrar didn't do was set any new fashion agendas and perhaps that wasn't the goal. (It can often take a new creative director a few seasons to find her or his footing after joining a house.) But she did add a sense of grownup sophistication to some of the biggest trends snowballing its way through the season including hyper-femininity (languid dresses and separates in silk chiffon and georgette), sex (lingerie-like sheer gowns) and glamour (her high wattage take on nighttime dressing via glossy leather, shimmery beadwork and lurex.)

Lanvin SS17

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