Paris men’s fashion week AW23: the highlights – in pictures (2023)

  • Hermes

    With designers playing to their strengths for AW23, Véronique Nichanian at Hermès went hard on leather, or rather butter soft with trench coats, trousers and Harrington jackets. Sophisticated and sexy, a finale of evening wear styled with louche silk scarves proved a hit with actor James Norton who sat front row. Shearling jackets saw a near blanket return to collections – one Paris PR quipped it was a direct result of the national ban on outdoor heaters on bar terraces in France – with those from Hermès the best and most luxurious on show.

    Photograph: Photo: Filippo Fior/Gorunway.com

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  • Loewe

    Jonathan Anderson turned in a stellar collection for Loewe, dialling back to focus on one key piece per look, in what he called ‘a reductionist act’. Key players were coats – maxi wool, double breasted or with a plunging cowl neck – accessorised with a supersized Puzzle tote bag. Sculptural pieces in copper and steel, including angel wings, were a nod to Renaissance painting, an era that influences contemporary artist Julien Nguyen, who provided the two huge artworks that stood on the otherwise empty show space, serving to focus the eye on Anderson’s collection.

    Photograph: Photo: Daniele Oberrauch/Gorun

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  • Marine Serre

    Under the cavernous ceiling at Grande Halle de La Villette loomed a trio of 8m high towers filled with surplus T-shirts, denim and canvas tote bags that will be regenerated for the collection’s production. On the runway were body-skimming patchwork dresses, trucker jackets, motocross pants and coats. It was more than food for thought, as Serre said in the show notes: “Each of us holds the power to help slow down the present accelerated timeline”.

    Photograph: Arnel Dela Gente/pr

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  • Dries Van Noten

    Dries Van Noten presented his ‘Study of the Natural World’ to a live soundtrack by sophisti-rave duo Lander & Adriaan. A collection of two halves that moved from classic tailoring – wide-shouldered jackets with narrow waists and wide high-waisted trousers – into a flora and fauna explosion with a rave twist. The colour palette moved from neutrals into green and pinks. Botanical prints inspired by drawings from Meise botanic garden in Belgium covered bombers and trousers with undulating patterns creeping across suits and picked out in beads on shirts.

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  • Rick Owens

    Rick Owens looked again to Luxor, Egypt, for inspiration, the scale of the ancient world helping to dwarf modern discomforts, coupled with a Victorian inspired silhouette – ‘a reflection of primness we see in prevalent online judgement’. The nipped waist, high shoulder jackets contrasted with huge cocoon coats in sombre colours. Owens’ eco credentials include use of recycled Pirarucu fish skins, usually wasted, providing income to indigenous communities in Brazil, and natural dyes on synthetic fibre – black from bamboo charcoal and green from olive waste.

    Photograph: Victor VIRGILE/pr

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  • Wales Bonner

    Twilight Reverie, Grace Wales Bonner’s AW23 collection, celebrated Black flaneurs and artistic visionaries of our time, from James Baldwin to Josephine Baker. Kendrick Lamar provided an original commission on the soundtrack and artist Lubaina Himid provided artwork for shirts and silk scarves. Models wandered through the grand salons of Hotel D’Evreux in tuxedos made with Savile Row’s Anderson & Sheppard and an Adidas kit collaboration with the Jamaican national team. The collection was rich with Bonner’s own brand of Parisian elegance.

    Photograph: pr

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  • Bode

    Emily Adams Bode Aujla’s family history is at the centre of her collections. AW23 marked her expansion into womenswear putting her mother’s side of the family into the spotlight. Fans of the brand are familiar with the homespun aesthetic that recreates vintage fabrics and utilises one-off vintage pieces. This was built upon to include beaded flapper dresses and 1930s chiffon gowns. Menswear evolved into pared back evening wear pieces, a take on a tuxedo with beaded trousers worn with a chiffon top. Embroidery was key throughout as was the folksy knitwear.

    Photograph: Estrop/pr

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  • Dior

    Artistic director Kim Jones enlisted the vocal talents of Dior ambassador, Robert Pattinson, and Gwendoline Christie to read extracts from TS Eliot’s The Waste Land, their faces projected on a huge screen spanning the length of the catwalk. An imagined journey from the Thames to the Seine echoed watery themes from the poem and sea-faring looks in the collection. Yves Saint Laurent’s first collection for Dior provided the final inspiration with a minimal trapeze line of coats. Elsewhere a kilt-like skort and winter shorts received plenty of catwalk airtime.

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  • Junya Watanabe

    Junya Watanabe’s palette cleansing black AW23 collection was a bell-weather of the stripped back vibe shift. When the master of workwear, punk and patchwork opens with a dark suit and black roll neck it makes you sit up and take notice. On close inspection the opening suit incorporated motocross knee pads, made with accessories brand Innerraum, who use motocross kit parts in their designs. This protective element ran throughout with padded vests and weather-proof outerwear. Watanabe’s 18-strong list of collaborators included Palace, The North Face, Champion and Karrimor.

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    Photograph: Yannis Vlamos/pr

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  • Homme Plissé Issey Miyake

    Seamless transformation is what Homme Plissé is known for – the flat card invitation to the show morphed into a 3D pyramid with a few careful folds and tabs… and a piece of pleated clothing can be expertly folded flat as a pancake for storage or travel. Dancers illustrated this on the catwalk with an unfurled bolt of fabric that undulated as they ran while a trippy light show of dots and contours was projected onto it. Bright colour ran throughout the collection, and tri-layering was a key silhouette as were winter shorts – good news for year-round shorts fans.

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  • Givenchy

    Creative director Matthew M Williams presented a collection that balanced an appreciation of the classics with a need to adapt them for a modern audience, including his own cohort of musicians and artists. Opening with four black suits made in the haute-couture atelier, the show moved into layered casual looks that tapped into modular dressing - trousers zipped apart to become shorts or unpicked into skirts. Williams referenced his own stateside heritage in the use of Americana tropes like plaid, bleached denim and sportswear.

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  • Ludovic de Saint Sernin

    Ludovic de Saint Sernin, the newly appointed creative director at Ann Demeulemeester (he makes his debut in March during the womenswear calendar) showed his namesake label on the final day of Paris menswear. Model of the moment Alva Clare sashayed in a rib knit skirt made from repurposed surplus stock. Front-box pleated mini skirt for all genders came in leather, dark denim and chainmail. Underpants with diamante branding peeped above waistbands. In contrast to the bare looks was a pair of wide-legged Yeti pants in a shaggy fabric that take three weeks to make.

    Photograph: Laurent VU/SIPA/Shutterstock

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  • Paul Smith

    Sir Paul also endorsed the black suit and roll neck look, opening his show with a white top stitched version. From there he moved away from traditional tailoring, presenting a series of broken suits with loosened ties and puffer jackets – a velvet dusky pink one stood out. Abstract and eclectic prints took inspiration from an antique rugs and textile collection. Plus, there was a new colourful bag collection with Mulberry, made in the UK at Mulberry’s carbon-neutral Somerset factories with leather sourced from Gold Standard tanneries certified by the Leather Working Group.

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  • Louis Vuitton

    Colm Dillane of KidSuper took the reins at Louis Vuitton as guest designer for AW23. In a show of hyper stimulation for the TikTok generation, Rosalia took to the stage, a film played, models walked through a series of room sets designed by film-makers Michel and Olivier Gondry, playing darts and doodling on the wall, and along runways between the audience. The trope of boyhood that was central to the label’s late artistic director Virgil Abloh played out here too. Notable pieces included faces patchworked in leather on coats and colourful sketches rendered on a suit and coat.

    Photograph: pr

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  • Kenzo

    Kenzo’s Friday night show at Salle Pleyel concert hall segued into a 1000 strong guest-list party. Creative director Nigo continued to mine the archive of founder Kenzo Takada but wove in his own streetwear influences. Inspiration references came thick and fast, including Vivienne Westwood, rocker and mod wardrobes, Japanese construction, American workwear and archive rose prints – all set to a live soundtrack of swinging sixties Beatles tunes performed by the 1966 Quartet. A khaki kimono with goldfish embroidery – a Japanese symbol of good fortune – stood out.

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    Photograph: MONIC/pr

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