“The only limit is your imagination,” read the Louis Vuitton Spring 2016 ready-to-wear show notes. What followed could have been outlandish, but under creative director Nicolas Ghesquière’s expert thumb, his muse was reborn as a post-apocalyptic spring warrior—with a side of Japanese anime.
Inside the Frank Gehry-designed architectural wonder that is the Fondation Louis Vuitton, a maze of tech screens was erected to prepare guests for a cyber journey of sorts. But if anyone was anticipating a show that tread on candy-coated futurist themes, Ghesquière instead delivered utilitarian outfits trimmed with ultra luxe details. Notably, many looks were nostalgically romantic—albeit with the designer’s signature rock-and-roll edge. To wit: sheer balloon-sleeve poet shirts with high ruffle necks were accented with leather inserts that slashed down the shoulder and onto the yoke; a black, midriff-baring, fanned ruffle top sparkled with silver stud details; and white, ‘80s bubble skirts were accessorized with black, braided leather harnesses.
While much of the collection was underlined in black, when Ghesquière tried his hand at color, he did so with dreamy abandon. Loose, silk motorcycle pants and long shorts featured a veritable color blocking menagerie—emerald, teal, beige, navy, white, and burgundy. This was echoed in the motorcycle jackets, where strips of black-and-white stripes collided with slaps of LV logo print leather and “shake you up” red-and-white bands. If, overall, logos have been kept in the shadows for some seasons now, they were a luxe sight on waistcoats, belts, and jackets. But the real heroes of the collection were the silk-washed jumpsuits; dresses featuring glass cut embellishments; and closing looks that subtly featured the House “V” in rainbow patterns. As for the bag of the season, the spray-painted quilted numbers just might be the artillery of choice for this rebellious, new world soldier.