As the final show on the fashion month schedule, Nicolas Ghesquière’s Louis Vuitton collections always have a lot resting on their shoulders. For Fall 2021 21, Ghesquière took us to the Louvre, staging a show that served as a lightning bolt of energy, ending the season on a high. Stomping to the familiar beat of Daft Punk’s “Around The World”—a particularly nostalgic choice, seeing as the music duo revealed they had parted ways two weeks ago—the collection married disparate references (après-ski, equestrian, Roman) to close out another socially-distanced season in style.
Some of Ghesquière ‘s most recognisable LV silhouettes were on full display—bubble skirts poked beneath parka coats and chunky knit sweaters, and oversized bombers were remade with satin sleeves in a regal shade of purple. Voluminous capes were worn over more streamlined tailoring, while the aforementioned equestrian nods came courtesy of slim culottes with sharp matching blazers.
In keeping with the setting (models wove through towering Greek and Roman marble sculptures in the Louvre’s Denon wing), clothes were embellished with the faces of Roman figures—a collaboration between Louis Vuitton and the Italian design studio Fornasetti, best-known for their coveted ceramic candles and plates. The prints appeared embossed on leather top-handle totes, woven into oversized cacoon coats, and peaking out of the lapels of jackets. The Roman nod was further emphasised with the final three looks, with frayed-hem dresses and lace-up sandals that paid homage to the Gladiators.
“I wanted something impactful, something that conveys hope and joy for what’s coming next, and for people to have a good time watching,” Ghesquière said after the show. “A moment of fashion.”
His was the last real-life runway show any of us saw before the world went into lockdown. It serves as the lingering memory, for many, of the electric power of the runway when experienced in person.
As far as recreating that sensation for an at-home audience goes, his mission was well and truly accomplished.