Fashion in 2020 has taken a turn. We traded heels for slippers and got dressed to go nowhere. The designers have reinvented the spring-summer 2021 season in digital presentations, masked events, organized podiums or have chosen not to broadcast them. Those who did were creative, but the bestselling collections were those who empathized with the devastating and joyous events that were happening in quarantine. Creative Director Anthony Vaccarello said in the press release for Saint Laurent’s Summer21 collection, which premiered today, “I wanted to focus on the essence of things.” “I think it’s a sign of the times, but I didn’t want anything dark or heavy.”
In a stunning video comprised of 66 looks, Vaccarello traded the scintillating scene of the Eiffel Tower for the desert of North Africa. Saint Laurent himself was born in Algeria, so it made sense for the brand to go back to its origins. “The desert, for me, symbolizes this desire for open space, serenity, a slower pace,” said Vaccarello.
The result is calm. Instead of heels stomping the sidewalk under the Parisian stars, mannequins clad in stilettos walked in the blazing sun across a sand dune. (How, exactly, is still undetermined.) The clothes are less fitted than the tight-fitting latex we’ve grown used to from Vaccarello, so think of that as his definition of comfort. The fabrics stand out from the body in pleated trousers and airy evening wear with feather finishes inspired by the 60s. A selection of jewels designed by Claude Lalanne, the iconic Smoking Jacket of the house is revisited in its truest form, and biker shorts are in the spotlight, because in uncertain times, at least Saint Laurent can be counted on for a leggy look. No, it’s not a midlife collection filled with sweatpants and hoodies, but it’s a far cry from the more restrictive silhouettes we’re used to from the Parisian house. It’s mellowed, without losing the glamor that some of us seek in our WFH caverns.
The video presentation goes dark and the runway ignites, chopping the models into a moody finale. The words “I wish you were here” flash on the screen and close the show. Truer words cannot be said this year on fashion and beyond.
New Short Film Of Saint Laurent Will Transport You To Summer 21