On the 12th June, Anthony Vaccarello continued to make his mark on the fashion world with his Spring/Summer 2024 collection for Saint Laurent. Following a series of successful showcases, including the Winter 2024 women's collection in Paris, the Paris Fashion Week Men's FW23 offering, and the memorable SS23 show in Morocco, Vaccarello sets his sights on Berlin for his latest menswear presentation.
Choosing the esteemed Neue Nationalgalerie as the venue for his show, Vaccarello pays homage to Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, the visionary architect behind this iconic masterpiece. The Neue Nationalgalerie, known for its classical modernism, features a glass pavilion topped with a steel roof, presenting a stark departure from the previous Moroccan and Parisian settings. Vaccarello's vision for this season is a bold and unapologetic take on Saint Laurent menswear.
The designer aimed to showcase an evolved identity for Saint Laurent, exploring what the brand can offer the contemporary man. The SS24 collection draws inspiration from the House's womenswear line, resulting in a harmonious blend of sharp tailoring and lightweight fabrics that exude summer-ready vibes. The structured garments carry an air of weightlessness, while trousers rise high and fall in pleated formations, and shoulders either boast generous proportions or depart from conventional shoulder constructions, embracing the House's heritage.
Infused with contemporary elements that resonate with Berlin's status as a Queer mecca, Vaccarello's quintessential Saint Laurent tuxedos challenge traditions when paired with satin tank tops that delicately embrace the body. The designer also manipulates Mousseline de Soie, a typically feminine couture material, to showcase its gauze-like, semi-transparent qualities, resulting in a perfect balance of sensuality and formality.
Vaccarello's work in this collection is an evolution of his signature Saint Laurent aesthetic, and the result is undeniably stunning. While retaining the brand's essence, he pushes the boundaries further, both metaphorically and literally, by emphasizing volume. Sculpted shoulders reminiscent of marble slabs frame the models' heads, tapering down to tightly cinched waists accentuated by slim belts. The trousers take center stage, starting high-waisted and progressing from cigarette-skinny to billowing and bold.
The silhouettes created by Vaccarello are mirrored in the choice of fabrics. Mousseline gracefully drapes across the skin, tantalizingly revealing the torso, providing a blend of voyeurism, sensuality, and sophistication that defines the entire collection.
Silk sarongs, knotted at the shoulder, cascade behind the wearer, imbuing the collection with a softer touch. Off-the-shoulder moments exude glamour, but in a twist, Vaccarello opts for jersey fabric, adding a contemporary edge. Silk appears repeatedly, wrapping the body in opulence, adorning tight-fitting ensembles that expose collarbones and project a fresh and elegant identity. The subtle incorporation of white bow ties into shirts subverts expectations, deviating from the norm of black bow ties.
Footwear remains quintessentially Saint Laurent, featuring slim-fitting heeled boots crafted from lustrous patent leather and premium materials. The shoes complement the collection, elevating it to new heights. This season, Vaccarello's designs embody romance, ease, openness, and progressiveness, surpassing any previous collections in these regards.
After five years at the helm, Vaccarello has undoubtedly found his stride. The key takeaway from the SS24 show is to envelop oneself in an abundance of fabric, inadvertently revealing just enough to captivate the eye. This approach encapsulates the essence of Saint Laurent's attitude, a quality that continues to resonate and drive the success of the brand.