Alexander Wang signs off from house of Balenciaga with poetic flourish at Paris Fashion Week
In a poetic turn, Alexander Wang's last collection for the house of Balenciaga might have been one of his best and most confident.
The entrance to the show at Paris Fashion Week was lit up by candles along the floor, with a long pool of water serenely shimmering under the spotlights under stone arches.
The mood felt bittersweet, as the New York-based designer prepared to leave the hallowed brand he joined three years ago.
Pure white, and utterly ethereal, in the stoic hall of an historical building in Paris' 7th arrondissement, these silky lingerie-inspired pieces were expertly constructed around the body to full feminine effect.
Stitching snaked around hips and curves, while frills on dresses came airy and light, but worn with lace flat slippers for that casual, modern appeal so associated with this Chinese-American designer who made his mark by popularising sports luxe.
Whereas his own label's show at New York Fashion Week continued to veer towards tough and streetwise androgyny, often in boxy shapes, at Balenciaga, Wang came over all romantic with his signature sportswear twist.
Although there were utility dungarees and jumpsuits, fabrics were so fluid and soft that the outfits proved a deft balance between tough and gentle. Accessories included a ruched backpack, bumbag and gorgeous fringed clutch.
Sheer gauze and mesh made for some athletic pieces that were also sensual and young.
Apart from the sensual slip gowns, the most interesting outfits referenced the 90s hiphop music playing throughout the show - silky bralets were worn with low rise satin, strappy cargo pants in ivory or white, all belted and slung below visible boxers.