Lacoste bets on urban pragmatism for catwalk comeback
An immense white canvas covered the stairs of the Palais de Tokyo, protecting the terrain set aside for the first runway show by Lacoste since the start of the pandemic from the rain that had been beating down on the French capital for the last few hours. For its catwalk comeback, the French brand founded by René Lacoste in 1933 paid tribute to its origins, creating an immaculate white space resembling a a tennis court, complete with tiered seating for the guests and an intensely green net that cut the catwalk in half. The sound of tennis rallies that greeted the show's attendees right up until the start of the show mixed with the usual hubbub of the skaters that frequent the modern art museum's esplanade, who, willingly or otherwise, were all dressed specially for the event, in sky blue shirts with crocodile logos.
A surprising look made up of a powder pink, waterproof, knee-length skirt and a techy green bandeau top with straps opened proceedings, setting the tone for the 50 looks to come. Futuristic sunglasses, long jacquard logo socks paired with sandals, and visors added the house's classic touch. British designer Louise Trotter, who has served as the brand's creative director since 2018, seemed to have it clear in her mind that her coed collection for Spring/Summer 2022 should be full of youthful references to the streets of Paris, all without losing sight of the Lacoste DNA.
Looks with sporty cuts and touches of streetwear were followed by wide, high-waisted, knee-length pants mixing boxing and basketball influences, worn with tight knitted V-neck sweater vests, overlapping oversized shirts, loose double-breasted blazers or even with elegant and lightly transparent polos in shades of blue and burgundy. These hues were part of the summery color scheme chosen for the collection, alongside Lacoste's classic dark green, which notably appeared in a pant-and-sports-jacket ensemble featuring a print repeating the brand's name. Camel, red, sky blue and black rounded out the palette, while the collection's more urban details brought in elements of reflective yellow and orange through trims, shoes and accessories.
Sport culture codes were repeated almost obsessively, creating an athletic uniform for everyday summer life in the city. This urban inspiration was also channeled into functional clothing such as rain jackets and light waterproof pieces adapted for cycling. Some raincoats were even comfortably rolled over the techy satchels worn by the models.
Tennis skirts were reinterpreted in rubber, and technical knits were incorporated into striped dresses and miniscule shorts, while neoprene was borrowed from diving gear to become the material of choice for tops and Teddy jackets. In this fusion of sports beyond the tennis court, NBA stylings took over looks with short pants and sleeveless tops, both in light, perforated fabric.
As for the MF Brands-owned label's emblematic knitted V-neck jersey, it was reinterpreted in the Trotter style, characterized by a large, frayed crocodile, presented here in intense fluorescent yellow. The show underlined the collection's practical aspect in its conclusion, closing with a series of parachute-cut nylon outerwear pieces, worn with diagonal XXL backpacks finished with knotted ropes.
Throughout the show, the models gradually took position along the upper tiers of the seating, forming rows behind the audience, which included actors Noah Schnapp, from Stranger Things, and Madelyne Cline, star of Outer Banks. Finally, at the show's close, the entire cast flooded into the center of the runway, as though coming together at the end of a match.
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