Your heart went out to to Anthony Vaccarello today, as his first model hit the catwalk, on the first day of Paris fashion week, and the sound system blew on pretty much the first note. Que sera, it happens. Designers are often subject to technological woes, especially when taking their first faltering steps onto the world stage. Vaccarello decreed the show must go on - and pulled it off. Many young designers couldn't have recovered, but for Vaccarello our attention was entirely focused on the clothes.
Why? Because the fashion crowd came expecting to see a young designer further refine their almost-signature look, not be blown away with a full-off, fully developed collection of clothes that were intriguingly-wrought, filled with texture and packed with detail. Vaccarello kicked everything up a notch from last season's twisty-turny dresses - although he stuck with the all-black palette. Those frocks were there again, but this time they were slightly looser, falling from collars to curve around the body with impressive openwork seaming. One had steel staples wrapping through metal-bound eyelets like twenty-second century faggoting - they were actually humble safety-pins, elevated to hi-tech adornment.
The short lengths of Vaccarello's cocktail dresses are starting to look a bit old-hat, likewise the clunky platform heels, but he got away with them this season - they looked sharper when he dropped his body-hugging hems to the knee. More impressive still were his sleek jumpsuits with more of that clever seamwork, and his tailored outerwear. A skirt and jacket bound in contrast black-on-black, and a knee-length coat came with tinselly over-embroidery at the shoulders. That was Vaccarello's opening statement and set the tone for the show - sophisticated, streamlined and straight-to-the-point. It also made you want to see more, just like the rest of this show. And for any designer young or old, that's hitting the jackpot.