In sub-zero degree Paris, nothing was more welcome during the shows than the abundance of fur we saw on and off the catwalk. Street style photographers were busy snapping show goers keeping warm in mink-lined denim jackets, pale green fox boas and Finnraccoon-trimmed coats, while designers used fur from Saga Furs to once again surprise us with their imaginative thinking and craftsmanship. Here are all the major fur looks from the pinnacle of the fashion industry as the AW18 shows drew to a close.
Tuomas Merikoski’s creative collaboration with Saga Furs resulted in another collection of clever and eye-catching fur looks, among them a sweater with Saga® Mink appliqué wording. Drawing on his Finnish motherland’s fondness for juxtaposing the strange and the normal – resulting in what’s come to be known as “Finnish weird’ – the designer showed simple daytime dresses overlaid with slinky, strappy intarsia Saga® Mink and Fox dresses. It was a lovely comment on the complexities of women, and how fantasy and reality coexist in fashion.
Thom Browne earned critical acclaim for the way he explored gender equality and feminism in an era of #metoo and #timesup, and for his incredible use of fur – a material that is a symbol of ultimate softness but also power and prehistoric strength. Beautifully detailed mink roses were placed strategically as body hair on a dress, or used to build curvaceous hips and a softly rounded bust. Nearly everything was grey – mimicking menswear’s grey office suits and flannels – from steely coats with mink lapels and matching attached mink mittens to evening capes with mink discs. This was couture level fur craftsmanship: a mink intarsia jacket echoed tweed swirling with flowers, while bands of white mink and fox were placed in curvilinear patterns on a stunning coat.
For further proof that fur is serious ‘don’t mess with me’ power dressing, Anthony Vaccarello showed a series of black mink and fox looks, among them two rock ‘n’ roll villainess fox jackets. Model Jamie Bochert in a sequinned black mini off shoulder dress with a sculpted dyed black Blue Fox trim gave new life to the LBD, while leather shorts were similarly souped up with Blue Fox. And as for what will surely be one of AW18’s major accessory pieces: well, it’s got to be Saint Laurent’s black mink tail earrings. Sleek, chic and utterly sexy.
Christian Dior and Valentino
Former Valentino duo Maria Grazia Chiuri and Pierpaolo Piccioli both showed fur looks at their respective houses. Chiuri’s homage at Dior to the 50th anniversary of the Paris student protests of 1968 included hyper-luxe takes on the hippie movement’s dress codes: a navy blue mink coat embroidered with colourful meadow flowers. At Valentino, Piccioli showed one of the artistic intarsia mink coats that have become a house hallmark, this time unlined to really show the craftsmanship that goes into such a piece – and the raw beauty of fur
For a house that’s always loved and understood the powerful energy of a fur coat, Sonia Rykiel’s 50th anniversary of course came with new additions to its fur archives. Creative director Julie de Libran showed a gorgeous black biker jacket with sheared mink lapel and mink hem.
Elie Saab was also on a mission to show the tougher and more commanding side of his ethereal women, and did so by adding gorgeous fox capelets that were built up into serious power shoulders, in tonal hues dyed to match his fairy tale dresses.
The alpha woman theme continued at Andrew Gn, who had looked at Catherine Deneuve’s films for inspiration, among them her turn as a fiercely elegant vampire in The Hunger. The result was highly worked coats trimmed with mink cuffs to signal a touch of animalistic sophistication.