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The harried jetsetter as spring 2018 trendsetter? Maison Margiela says, 'Oui!'

The harried jetsetter as spring 2018 trendsetter? Maison Margiela says, 'Oui!'
The finale of the Maison Margiela spring and summer 2018 runway collection, presented at the Grand Palais on Sept. 27 during Paris Fashion Week. (Thierry Chesnot / Getty Images)

Looking in from outside the fashion-week bubble, it's easy to think flying off to cover runway shows around the world as one endless, effortless, glamorous step-and-repeat adventure. And for the special few — those who travel with a team of minders, stylists, groomers and makeup artists — it can be exactly that. But for most, it's an endlessly looping mad dash from hotel to airport to shows and back again, rinse and repeat, where the closest thing to feeling glamorous is arriving at the first runway show of the day wearing matching shoes.

That's probably why the Maison Margiela spring and summer 2018 runway collection was so much fun to watch come down the catwalk at the Grand Palais Wednesday, using the decidedly unglamorous notion of dressing in haste (a.k.a. "just throwing something on") as the springboard to explore what the show notes called "unconscious glamour ... the ritual action of wrapping a towel around one's head at the spa, clutching a pillow at the airport or slipping on a simple T-shirt."

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Looks from the Maison Margiela spring and summer 2018 women's ready-to-wear collection.
Looks from the Maison Margiela spring and summer 2018 women's ready-to-wear collection. (Francois Guillot / AFP / Getty Images, left and center, Thierry Chesnot / Getty Images, right)

In the hands of creative director John Galliano, rose-patterned jacquard toweling was draped into bustiers and dresses; Aloha-Friday-appropriate Hawaiian feather prints appeared on skirts and shirts; and a bar-coded baggage-tag print (an idea, one can only imagine, born from an extra-long wait for luggage to arrive) appeared on a pleated skirt and a short collar.

Other memorable looks included a series of beige men's trench coats sliced and diced and reconfigured into women's dresses, one with a red riding jacket overtop that had been reworked into a bustier, another with the shoulders and sleeves removed, cinched at the waist and worn over a nude bodysuit.

The rectangular, white quilted pillows tucked under the arms of some models not only helped round out the theme of the harried jetsetter, it helped the label's newest bag — the Glam Slam — make an indelible impression. The cloud-like shoulder bag hit the runway in white nappa lambskin leather, and will be available in a handful of colors and fabrications when it hits retail in January 2018.

Just in time for the next round of fashion week shows.


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For more musings on all things fashion and style, follow me at @ARTschorn.

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