In Paris, the AW17 shows ended the same way they had begun in New York: with fur everywhere, on the street as well as the catwalk. Trend-wise, dyed furs in all the colours of the rainbows are here to stay but designers are increasingly turning their attention to the beauty of natural fox and mink, especially in shades of gold, grey and pastel, often used as a patchwork contrast.
Big 1940s/1970s silhouettes and massive shoulders have also been running through the shows, often exaggerated into conceptual shapes. And while many shows carried a political message this season, designers also pushed a hyper-luxurious statement, seemingly saying that in uncertain times we might as well go all in on glamour, eccentricity and fun.
At Sonia Rykiel, gorgeous natural Saga® Fox was used for a full coat and as a collar to amp up the luxe factor on a shearling jacket. A black Saga® Mink bomber with tonal ribbed leather trim offered a very polished take on sportswear chic, further elevated by the nonchalance of a matching narrow mink scarf tied choker-style around the neck which hung elegantly down the back.
Kym Ellery played with Parisian bourgeois dress codes, which of course included the fur coat. Here, it was re-imagined in oversize shapes, like a Saga® Fox coat with chocolate and gold vertical stripes. Ladylike fox collars on evening coats were exaggerated into almost cape-sized proportions, taking an experimental approach to classic fur pieces.
Harnessing the eternal glamour of a statement fur stole, creative director Christine Phung sent out a series of wide Saga® Fox stoles dyed in rich hues of burgundy and teal or gleaming white. Florals – a house signature – were depicted in colourful intarsia Saga® Mink on a coat and a gilet.
Finnish designer Tuomas Merikoski used Saga® Silver Fox to create perfect, light fur pieces such as a full fox gilet dress dyed in graphic contrasting colours – one of AW17’s major trends – and fur sleeve accents to add volume to body-conscious knitwear. Fusing nature and the city, he set off pinstripe tailoring with the wild beauty of dyed Saga® Silver Fox as peplum-like extensions on jackets and as sporty zipped collars.
Using fur as a sumptuous addition to Lanvin’s rich embellishments and slinky silks, creative director Bouchra Jarrar showed three key light-as-a-feather looks in Gold Fox and dyed black fox, contrasted in a striking chevron pattern.
If anyone knows glamour, it’s Elie Saab. The designer paired his diaphanous dresses with megawatt fox coats in tonal colours (the matchy-matchy trend we first saw in New York): cream cobweb dresses with the softest Fawn Light Fox coats, an electric blue lace look with a coat trimmed with matching fox, and gothic black tulle with an eighties-influenced leather jacket with glossy fox sleeves and lapel.
For the first time since joining Vuitton, creative director Nicolas Ghesquière put fur front and centre with a series of incredible multi-fox outerwear pieces in natural and dyed fox. It proved a smart move: his fur jackets were immediately all over Instagram. Styled with cropped flares, it was a dress up/dress down look guaranteed to be everywhere on the street come autumn.
Ending Paris on a fur high, Miuccia Prada used fox for a crystal, silk and fur-covered love letter to glamour. Dusty pastel and cream fox were shaped into 1940s silhouettes in overdrive while other pieces had an air of a baseball player’s padded shoulders meets movie starlet fox stole slung across a striped sleeve jacket – a fresh, elevated take on the bomber and the current obsession with nostalgic sportswear.