When Ziggy Stardust meets the vive la France sentiments, you have the startings of the latest Balmain collection by Olivier Rousteing. Glam maximalism is his forté, and he didn’t hold back on this amped up cocktail of equal parts popstar and patriot.
Looking for bodycon? You’re going to have to search for it. The Balmain fashion house has expanded its repertoire this season toward the girl with a little more edge. Concert tees were paired with studded leggings or androgynous trousers with square-shouldered jackets electrified in zigzag and chevron patterns previously only fit for a stage. Yes, this is now RTW. In the off season.
But don’t fret, Kardashian followers. The bodycon dresses are still here, just pared down in silhouette, but revved up in heavy metal. Rousteing even through a few red and grey leopard prints with ruffed fur trim your way.
There were dreamy looks inspired by the cosmos with stunning black velvet bodycon numbers and jackets trimmed in silver constellations and starbursts. The hemline of the skirt had a cutdown V, a similar tack to the oval panels in the Resort 2018 collection – this time much more successful.
Yet we also saw a more tempered side of the designer, with herringbone tweed, marinière striping in knits, and suiting. Just as exciting as the amped up looks were the (relatively) subdued diamond quilted minis with sharp shoulders and layered piping at the hemlines. Simple but striking.
Patent trousers met with clear trenches and tuxedo jackets with faux boning in black, creating a flattering effect. A clear ankle length pencil skirt with black trim was buttoned so tight, I’m pretty sure the model was just acting as a double leg lamp at this point.
And here’s where the collection starts to go off the rails for me…what I like to affectionately call the trash bag pants. First, there’s a jumpsuit with a cute bustier top with gold buttons down to the waist. But then, it’s like Balmain found the heaviest industrial strength trash bags that the mafia uses to get rid of bodies…and they put it on her legs. And this poor girl looks half dead anyways. And then they did it again with another pair of pants. They thought this idea was so good, they did it more than once.
But you know what’s even worse? This. THIS. RIGHT. HERE. Holographic M.C. Hammer pants, my friends.
Done. Olivier, you’re lucky we love you so much.