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Nicola Mira
Feb 11, 2020
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Longchamp goes back to the 70s with NY Fashion Week show

Translated by
Nicola Mira
Feb 11, 2020

French label Longchamp first showed in New York in September 2018 to celebrate its 70th anniversary, and has now become a NY Fashion Week regular, with the ability to rejuvenate itself season after season, without being hemmed in by its key element, leather.

Longchamp - Fall/Winter 2020 - Womenswear - New York - © PixelFormula

“Here, I feel freer than at home in Paris,” said Longchamp’s Creative Director Sophie Delafontaine after the show. “So [I take] a few more risks. [When you’re] abroad, you go farther, you explore more, and I also love the idea of showing that Longchamp is a very international label,” she added.

This season, Delafontaine gave New York a glimpse of the Parisian women of the 1970s, embodied by actresses like Catherine Deneuve and Romy Schneider. Models clad in maxi skirts - a change after last season’s uber-short silhouettes - high-heeled boots, turtleneck sweaters and puff sleeves, strutted down the catwalk under the watchful eye of top model Kendall Jenner, Longchamp’s brand ambassador.

Accessories are Longchamp’s core business, and Delafontaine went for patent leather shoes, inspired by the shiny brilliance of the bodywork used by US artist John Chamberlain for his crushed-car sculptures.

Delafontaine also reinterpreted the Pliage handbag, one of Longchamp’s signature models, into several different sizes.

Christopher John Rogers does sexy

The 26 year-old US designer is in full bloom. After first catching the critics’ eye in 2018, last November he won the CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund, an annual award for emerging US designers.

Christopher John Rogers - Fall/Winter 2020 - Womenswear - New York - © PixelFormula

Past winners include Alexander Wang, Proenza Schouler and, in 2018, Pyer Moss. With the $400,000 prize money, Rogers has upped his professional game, having more means to express his fashion vision. The essential traits of Rogers’s previous collections - bright colours, a penchant for volumes and a glam vibe - all featured in his latest work, this time expressed with an extra touch of sophistication and fresh consistency.

“We like to play with volume,” he told the Essence magazine's website before the show, adding “but there’s a new edginess, a trimmer line. [The Fall 2020 collection is] a bit sexier than past seasons.”

Private Policy slams pharma industry

The duo of Chinese-born New York designers Haoran Li and Siying Qu, who founded Private Policy in 2015, like to use their shows as a platform to draw attention to societal issues.

This season, they chose to denounce the pharmaceutical industry’s practice of “spending more money on marketing than on research,” as Li told the AFP agency after the show. To conjure up the image of an industry that, according to the duo, “maximises profits to the detriment of patients’ health,” Private Policy featured medical gloves ubiquitously in its show.

Several models wore blouses inspired by hospital staff uniforms, while a plush teddy bear speared by three syringes featured on a sweater. At a time when many are questioning the relevance of catwalk shows, Private Policy sees them as a way of going beyond fashion in order to deliver a message: “I believe this is what interests people nowadays,” said Li, who nevertheless doesn’t expect all designers to make political statements. “I love the idea of diversity. Each one of us can be inspired by different things,” he said.

Li regretted the fact that “many” of the invited guests weren’t “able to come [to New York] because of the ban” on travel to the USA for anyone who had been in China in the last two weeks, due to the coronavirus.


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