When Saint Laurent announced earlier this year that it will leave 2020’s fashion calendar behind to “lead its own rhythm,” it left the industry hotly anticipating what it would do next. Today, we got to see Anthony Vaccarello’s new vision beginning to take shape with the reveal of his spring summer 2021 men’s collection for the house, two months after most of the other fashion houses have shown theirs.
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What remains unchanged is the sense of spectacle Vaccarello has made synonymous with a Saint Laurent presentation. That spectacle now comes in the form of a gorgeously cinematic short film, which combined balletic grace with action-film-style thrills. The film begins at dawn and tracks a group of beautiful young things in Paris, Beijing and New York as they soar and hurtle across rooftops—seemingly chasing some Great Unknown.
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The clothes came mostly in an inky, moody palette of blacks with the occasional flash of metallics and botanics. Silhouettes were louche and loose, much like the Malibu dream Vaccarello showed last year. Silken shirts and lightweight jackets sported long hems trailing behind in the wind while trousers were cuffed or cropped—all grounded by soft lace-ups in sheer mesh or rope sandals. These were pieces that wouldn’t look out of place in Yves’s beloved Marrakesh.
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The Saint Laurent brand of sex and sophistication is still there but Vaccarello has made it freer, easier—the androgynous glamour and the uninhibited bohemia of the Seventies colliding in one collection. As night falls on the City of Light and the music builds to a crescendo, the film culminated in a dramatic walk on the Eiffel Tower itself, all dazzlingly lit up—a nod to the film’s poetic title, No Matter How Long the Night Is, that brightness always lies ahead.