Loewe’s latest loving Latin touch
today Sep 27, 2019
Few shows for Loewe by Jonathan Anderson have looked quite so Latin, so redolent of the Iberian Peninsula and its grandiose history, as his latest display on a sunny Friday morning in Paris.
A flotilla of limousines ferried some 500 pampered souls out to Anderson’s favored location – UNESCO in the posh 7th arrondissement. Every editor of note; an army of Asian influencers and even A$AP Rocky – who is now a fixture at any important show in the French capital – showed up.
Anderson is a very busy designer – between running his own brand in London, and being creative director of Madrid-based Loewe. The sheer weight of both women’s and men’s shows means that Jonathan doesn’t always get it right at both houses. But this season, he scored major home runs with both JW Anderson and Loewe.
There were perhaps more lace collars on the catwalk than in a dozen Velasquez paintings of multiple popes. And the silhouette echoed the paintings of the Spanish court – from billowing hourglasses to arty crinolines. Though, by using unexpected materials – techy lace or artisanal embroideries – all the 42 passages were thoroughly contemporary. And by reducing the concept to the max – pairing a transparent lace skirt with just semi-sheer bra indented with tiny pearls, he injected great punch and panache.
A blend of sexy nun and suggestive princess in a show that was crammed full of notable accessories. Whether the new knobby court shoe with cut out top; or the excellent thigh boots worn under revealing space-age lace cocktails.
No wonder the man with the biggest smile backstage was Anderson’s ultimate boss Sidney Toledano – president of LVMH’s fashion division that includes Loewe. The house broke the half billion-euro mark last year in sales, meaning Anderson will have doubled revenue in his half-decade in charge.
This is the nearest that Anderson has come to making couture quality clothes – and he is clearly stretching himself, and the house.
“We’ve been working a lot with resources in England, France and Spain. The question I asked was how do we make these sort of dresses in an industrial way. You can create all these ideas, but then the dresses are unobtainable. So it’s the balance of using the right amount of something – so you see the living hand in it, whether you are using cotton, leather or embroidery,” explained the designer.
His set was almost all in various shades of white – ecru carpet; sunny white high plastic bar stools; and a whole series of semi-transparent curtains that began to move back and forth to signal the debut of the show. Interspersed before them – huge plants whose giant pots rotated and a series of giant amethysts.
“I got that idea from visiting Japan. Where all the hotel curtains open to reveal a sky scape. Where rooms can become bigger and smaller and I thought the idea that plants go one way and curtains the other was very Loewe. The amethysts were natural Giacometti,” he added.