Balmain’s FW22 Collection Sent a Message of “Honesty and Transparency” Down the Runway

Using pale colors, lace and fragile fabrics to narrate its theme.

Fashion
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Olivier Rousteing’s offering for Balmain’s Fall/Winter 2022 collection, came in the form of personal revelations, healing and a response to the downside of social media.

Set against a backdrop of pastel-colored clouds floating on a jumbo-wide digital screen, Rousteing opened his FW22 show with a group of Balmain-clad dancers performing an inspired routine that emphasized the collection’s theme of hope. As the dancers exited the stage, an army of Balmain models sauntered down the runway – 1-by-1 – in a chic display of layered and embellished whites, belted vests, laser-cut leather and bandage tops.

The center of the presentation showcased Rousteing’s affinity for technology and futuristic apparel, with intricately placed geometric patchwork pieces appearing on shirt panels, sleeves and pants legs. Denim jeans were slashed at the knee and held together by fabric straps, while leather gilets and padded moto jackets flowed behind gilded armor plate ensembles, and ‘80s style black-and-white tuxedo jackets.

The final stretch of the show was perhaps the most revelatory, as skeletal x-ray prints appeared on bodices, biker shorts, form-fitting tops and blazers. A nod to the rounds of medical examinations and procedures that Rousteing endured last year after his fireplace explosion in 2020.

Commenting on his health recovery and the uplifting message he intended for this collection, Rousteing says:

“Our men’s and women’s collections — channeling the need for knowledge, honesty and transparency to form the key arms of our collective push-back against lies, hate and aggression — may seem to be inspired by the anxiety-inducing headlines of the past week. But, of course, such a quick reaction could never have been possible.”

“Late last year, when I first began sketching these collections, my inspiration was a much more personal one: my response to not-always-pleasurable experiences on social media. Much of my recent unhealthy obsession with hiding any signs of changes, discoloration and scarring as I healed from burns that I suffered last year can be directly traced to the fears that I had of exposing myself to the poisonous power of anonymous posters’ scornful judgments. But ultimately, that experience helped push me to realize that the only possible response to the incredible shaming potential of social media is to face it head-on — addressing it with honesty and clarity while drawing courage from the support and love of others,” he adds.

In other fashion week news, Nanushka pledged support to Ukraine with the arrival of its new FW22 collection.

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