Chanel © Jason Lloyd-Evans

Rare was the catwalk without a suit this season, where tailoring took centre stage. At Alexander McQueen, designer Sarah Burton was inspired by the warriors of ancient myth to create an embroidered brocade that was breath-taking and empowering, while the most feminine incarnation came via Comme des Garçons, where Rei Kawakubo had slashed the waist to allow for a pregnant stomach.

Alexander McQueen
Alexander McQueen © Jason Lloyd-Evans
Comme des Garçons
Comme des Garçons © Jason Lloyd-Evans

At Balenciaga it came in two options: with great big square shoulders that were “stuffed like a sofa”, according to the house’s designer Demna Gvasalia, or soft-shouldered, easy and effortless as a shirt. Gvasalia is “obsessed” with the shoulder, an area he decribes as the “definition of a silhouette.”

Balenciaga © Jason Lloyd-Evans
APC at Paris Fashion Week SS19
APC © Jason Lloyd-Evans
Sonia Rykiel
Sonia Rykiel © Jason Lloyd-Evans

Likewise Clare Waight Keller, at Givenchy. For SS19 she had dropped the shoulder slightly forward, to flatten it to the body and narrow the line. She then made it more butch with extra layers of tonal suiting — and the effect was incredibly sharp.

Givenchy © Jason Lloyd-Evans
Dries Van Noten
Dries Van Noten © Jason Lloyd-Evans

Were the suits masculine or feminine or somewhere in between? At Celine, Hedi Slimane debuted a first collection that showcased a handful of suits in his signature lean silhouette. On the catwalk most of the tailoring was worn by men, but it will be sold in women’s sizes as well. John Galliano deconstructed the suit and gave it new proportions at Maison Margiela, but one of his most compelling offerings came in a silky, shiny black. Nicolas Ghesquière’s suits at Louis Vuitton were mannish, but worn by women.

Celine © Jason Lloyd-Evans
Maison Margiela
Maison Margiela © Jason Lloyd-Evans
Louis Vuitton
Louis Vuitton © Jason Lloyd-Evans

Most suits came with trousers, but there were some skirts as well. Sacai’s Chitose Abe wove together a pefectly tailored blazer with a military cape and trench to create a hybrid suit, that looked as pretty as a dress. At Chanel, Karl Lagerfeld made a good case for the skirt suit in sorbet shades of tweed.

Sacai © Jason Lloyd-Evans
Chanel © Jason Lloyd-Evans
Marine Serre
Marine Serre © Jason Lloyd-Evans

But if we were to pick the suit of the season, we’d have to look to Loewe. Jonathan Anderson’s beige ensemble had slouchy trousers and a contrast white lapel. Utterly lovely.

Loewe © Jason Lloyd-Evans
Valentino © Jason Lloyd-Evans
Akris © Jason Lloyd-Evans

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