Fall/winter 2012 was a season of transforming and transporting at the house of Balenciaga. With a robust roster of collections under his design belt, all of which have been rooted in the brand’s iconic heritage dating back to the early twentieth century, creative director Nicolas Ghesquière was looking towards the future this season; coincidentally, or perhaps not, fall/winter 2012 came to be the designer’s final cold-weather collection for the brand which he singlehandedly resurrected in the late 1990s.
Posted March 10th, 2018By
The runway show’s neon-lit, floating office setting, perched atop the 27th floor of a Paris skyscraper, an elevation seeming almost like outer space in Europe’s most beautiful, pre-war city, set a perfect tone for the collection’s futuristic corporate clothing. Ghesquière presented an offering of conceptual everyday ‘office’ wear, with highly developed fabrics, new age animal prints – leopard spots rendered through padded appliqué, inlayed zebra stripes and jacquard snakeskin – contradictory shapes, simple silhouettes and low-slung heels for easy mobility. From a commercial standpoint, the show’s sci-fi sweatshirts were easily covetable for even the most uninformed Balenciaga fan. In hindsight, these relaxed, graphic-printed garments were early, contemporary examples of streetwear invading high fashion. Over the course of the past five years, Balenciaga’s ‘Join a Weird Trip’ sweatshirts have become iconic visuals of the house, while ‘dressed up’ active-wear has infiltrated the runways of Paris fashion week; and therein lies the genius of Nicolas Ghesquière, a highly innovative creative director with an esteemed ability to foresee the future of fashion.