Paul Smith F/W 2017
Sir Paul’s Happy Sophie’s Choice
Now that’s what we call a great Co-Ed show! In a major vote for Paris, Paul Smith moved his women’s collection to the French capital from London this season, presenting it for the first time with his signature menswear – which he has unveiled in the French capital these past four decades.
Oodles of brands – from Burberry to Gucci to Kenzo – have begun presenting guys and girls together – though, as much for economic reasons as for aesthetic ones, in our view. However, most all of them staged the men’s and women’s shows already in the same city. So, Smith’s decision was far more significant, as he had a Sophie’s Choice fashion call to make. And in our view he made the right decision – one that helped fuel a memorable show.
It kicked off with a great Classic with a Twist opening duo – a lady in a Black Watch tartan pants suit, accompanied by a gent in a beautifully cut trench-coat in the same fabric. Underneath she wore a beautiful Western suit, while he donned a superb light mustard windowpane check suit. An ideal couple. Elsewhere, the Brit designer sent out the different sexes in several matching fabrics – from a charming smoky Prussian gray cashmere to a darkened jacquard seen in a razor sharp dandy suit.
Sir Paul kept the tailoring fresh, finishing pants with knit ankles topping lizard skin winkle-pickers; and using one of the season’s best casts – hirsute, self-assured and smiling.
“Why come to Paris? Because I have been showing here since 1976. My business is 70% men’s and 30% women’s, and couture starts tonight!” said the fashion knight. Which meant his show also attracted a series of major league women’s critics and Anna Wintour, no less. No wonder, in a season marked by worries about Brexit, he is Paris’ favorite Englishman.