This summer, Demna Gvasalia will showcase the first Balenciaga couture line in 52 years. The brand had not presented couture since its founder Cristóbel Balenciaga closed the atelier’s doors in 1968, but this will all change in July for the autumn/winter 2020 collection presented in Paris. In a statement, Gvasalia said: “For me, couture is an unexplored mode of creative freedom and a platform for innovation… and is the very foundation of this house.”
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Christian Dior once said that Balenciaga was “the master of us all” when it came to his couture skills. Gvasalia wants to bring this back. The founder of Vetements, the anti-fashion luxury brand that references popular culture and capitalism through streetwear, may already know ready-to-wear, but couture is a new field. Commenting on the announcement, he said it “offers another spectrum of possibilities in dressmaking.” Taking over from Alexander Wang in 2015, Gvasalia is responsible for the brand becoming one of the most coveted labels by a millennial market in recent years. He designed iconic pieces such as the chunky Triple S ‘dad-trainers’, the Speed Stretch Hi-tops and logo-adorned hoodies and T-shirts.
For the Balenciaga spring/summer 2020 collection, Gvasalia closed the catwalk with five XL Cinderella-style gowns fitted with hoop hemlines, that bobbed gently up and down as each model walked. A whole new direction for Balenciaga’s sporty aesthetic, which Gvasalia had previously employed, perhaps the metallic lamé got the better of him and whet his appetite for cool couture design? Whether the direction will be to go contemporary or classic we’re not sure, but either way, we’re excited to see what he has in store.
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