Fashion reflects the mood of the society and many were keen to see how luxury fashion, an industry with profit-making at its heart, can seek to comment on a world in crisis. In Milan Menswear Autumn 2016 Fashion Week, Miuccia Prada’s washed up sailors reminded us images of refugees landing in dingy boats on the shores of Greece and in Paris security guards whizzed metal detectors over designer coats outside every show, asking people to empty pockets and open bags.
The designers made strong statements reflecting the state of the world today. At Comme des Garçons Homme Plus, Rei Kawakubo paid a a silent tribute to a world divided by violence by presenting her ‘Warriors of Peace’. Models walked in armor like suits with shoulder pads and articulated sleeves. The boys wore elaborate floral headpieces in their hair as gesture of peace.
Kris Van Assche presented his New Wave look for Dior Homme. The look expressed emotional angst what is also known as ‘Emo-Chic‘ with fingerless gloves and black nail varnish – the subculture of black-clad, angst teenagers. The silhouettes were easy-going; trousers were slim and cropped, or high-waisted and wide; some with stitching details. Then there were the accessories – pussy bow ties and charm necklaces. It’s like the Dior Homme man is expressing a youthful and carefree part of his identity.
Kim Jones also created something of an army for Louis Vuitton. Models donned overcoats and army greens, with dogtag-style necklaces, and military berets. Balmain’s. Olivier Rousteing had his models in Swarovski crystal-coated jackets and Jodhpur-like sweatpants and equestrian boots. There was a clear militaristic influence, Yohji Yomamoto had provocative slogans directed at Angela Merkel.