It’s a time for thinking about gender and, just as we saw in the Men’s AW 20-21 collections, the women’s runways shows jumped right into the ongoing debate.
From suits with exaggeratedly imposing cuts to increasingly unisex wardrobes reflecting a new, more sensitive and poetic form of virility, designs underscore female emancipation (or female empowerment).
One thing’s certain: whether super-sexy or confidently masculine, the AW 20-21 collections have a strong, all-conquering and engaged woman in mind.
Furthering the new tailoring concept initiated by the AW 20-21 men’s fashion shows, the autumn-winter women’s fashion shows focused on the suit and its particular characteristics. We are seeing the emergence of a more structured wardrobe that confirms the importance of fine materials featuring a resistant fineness and a suppleness that feels fuller in the hand. Skirt suits are making a big comeback and pant suits are updating coordinated ensembles.
Expressly rejuvenated by plays on asymmetry and deconstruction, suit jackets go in for dense and firm handles. They’re teamed with elongated and elegant pants and skirts with a new suppleness, thanks to lustrous woollens.
Fabrics including wool/cotton or wool/silk mixes feature new neutrals or, conversely, biting and pigmented darks – violet, green, deep blue, wine-dark reds – thus confirming the Première Vision colour range for A/W 20/21.
Silhouettes lean to beautiful classics, invigorated by bold colour combinations. Cuts are happily oversized and woollen blazers are often double-breasted, evoking a men’s silhouette, mixed with high-waisted cigarette pants that lend a touch of femininity to the overall look.
Shoulders are broad and powerfully accentuated, either too rounded or too sharp, cutting a dramatic figure that looks fully primed to take on today’s societal demands.
Fabrics | Jacquard | GÜLIPEK TEKSTIL, Turkey | Réf : 20*4014 – ARQUETTE | 42%Viscose 33%Acetate 25%Lin | See more
Fabrics | Woollens | ZEN KIWAMI BY STYLEM, Japan | Réf : ZEN-85-20AW1685 – ZEN-85-20AW1685 | 100%WOOL | See more
Fabrics | Suitings | BTD TEKSTIL, Turkey | Réf : 201325 – HANK | 72%PES 21%VIS 7%EA | See more
Fabrics | Woollens | Leichtfried GmbH & Co. KG, Austria | Réf : 16/230 co: PURE540 Plain Merino Wool | 100% WV | See more
For the past few seasons, designers have happily sent men and women down the runway in the same shows. The men’s A/W runways took a step towards a more unisex, interchangeable wardrobe, an idea which was confirmed in the women’s shows. These were pieces sure to attract both men and women, without necessarily indicating a specific gender.
Trousers were androgynous and sported high-waisted, wide or cigarette cuts worked in velvets and leathers. Full and supple leather pants in washed dipped lamb abounded, worn with little jackets to balance out the silhouette. More or less supple trench coats with strong shoulders, also in leather, were tossed over nighties and accessorised with chunky shoes or worn over close-fitting shirts and ties.
Motifs were quick to borrow from menswear staples, especially checks such as Prince of Wales and tartans, embracing both mix-and-match and total looks in woollens or, in a newer vein, printed on leather.
Leather | Full grain leather | UCD USAK CEVAHIR DERI, Turkey | Réf : FALCON – FALCON | Lamb | See more
Leather | Full grain leather | NEW PELLI, Italy | Réf : 004MF – CANADA BE_GREEN | Lamb | See more
Fabrics | Plain | VELCOREX, France | Réf : QF00003074 – CASORIA / MW | 98% CO 2% ELASTHANNE | See more
Confident virility, assertive power statement, a unisex wardrobe – designers are undoubtedly posing questions about the very meaning of gender. Interchangeable wardrobes are blurring the boundaries and pushing for style and gender freedom, for inclusivity.