After a long wait and a longer list of guesses, finally the Givenchy’s Spring 2021 collection by the young American designer Matthew M. Williams has been presented in Paris. The event was very much awaited – as much as Raf Simons x Prada – and it takes its place inside a Paris Fashion Week that seems to be pivoting towards new landscapes. Maybe it is because of the presence of several new entries, also from abroad, but Paris this season counts more dynamic runways, less traditional and in some sense irreverent.
Williams at Givenchy is doing exactly the same thing, even if in a soft way. He took the vacant place in the trio of young “street” designers leading historical Maisons and reinventing the codes of their aesthetic, together with Kim Jones at Dior Homme and Virgil Abloh at Louis Vuitton. The theory that brought Williams to Givenchy earlier this year is just the same: a young creative, able to boost the sales and speak to a wider public, not anymore to the elites, but to the “street” indeed.
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The Spring 2021 collection is a smart mix of Givenchy and Williams, in the sense that, from the famous couturier the collection takes shapes, refinement and elegance, while Williams is able to decline all in a quiet informal and daily wardrobe. To make each garment special is the work done on fabrics: the way they are used, matched and alternated. This is meant to be the new trademark of Givenchy: Williams has not used logo in order to sing his work, but the fil rouge is rather in the detailed and special materials, which is a risky strategy maybe, but very in line with the Maison.
Elegant and linear suits, with angular details on the shoulders, are worn with flat shoes and bags both in crocodile coloured leather. The laced shoes with contrasting soles are just beautiful and can be paired with any wardrobe, while sandals and pumps have interesting heels, which recalls, in their “animality” to McQueen (Alexander). Urban garments are balanced by elegant ones: for example the parka jacket and the transparent, white sheer trench coat, and the cargo pants blended with sartorial ones. This is, of course, a very different collection if compared with the ones Waight Keller used to give us. Still.
Cover image courtesy: Givenchy