Louis Vuitton: Menswear SS18
Exit one and I’m getting a touch of the Garth Spencers. Was our Exec Fashion Director on the moodboard for Kim Jones’ SS18 Louis Vuitton collection this afternoon? In a word: no. He wasn’t. But hear me out – it was something about the unlikely combination of a sports short with something tailored on top, a combination which Mr Spencer often enjoys. But, whilst Garth favours a short of a length best described as “not suitable for children” – these were sleek, knee-length and formed from sporty scuba, contrasted with an open grey wool blazer, striped shirt, and slightly cropped jumper.
Kim said this collection was about islands. Island hopping. The way that island nations are both apart from the world yet in constant dialogue with it – through trade, through culture, through dress. He referenced both New Zealand and Easter Island in the notes – but it was Hawaii that became the place of this season – drawing on the nation’s surf culture. Hence the scuba. And, whilst there’s been a prevalence of surf-inspired clothing this season, what Kim always does is wholly new, and wholly brilliant – the classic Hawaiian shirt here reimagined in a sheer, lustrous fabric, sitting alongside sporty LV-branded tops that rose high up the neck or a a luxury take on the branded tourist tee.
These were combined with suiting that was brilliantly lightweight – wide in the leg and tapering ever-so slightly at the ankle (a similar shape echoed in generous tailored shorts), worn here with blazers that were wide at the shoulder but unstructured, giving a silhouette Kim called “kinetic”, heightened with movement. So many great accessories – clogs, ribbing hiking sandals, tourist-shop coral necklaces, clip-buckle monogram belts. Bags that folded in the models hands, or sat across the chest – some flush to the body, like that brilliant bumbag, others hard-cased like miniature luggage – all shot through with electric blue. So for those posing the question: how could Mr Jones possibly follow that Supreme collaboration? Well, with an effing great collection, apparently. Did you expect anything less? Kim Jones is a very clever man.
Photographs by Jason Lloyd-Evans