It was a celebratory send off for Alexander Wang at the Balenciaga fashion show in Paris this weekend. The young designer showed his final collection before leaving the legendary fashion house.
It was reported back in July that the designer and the French fashion house would be parting ways mutually this season (NY Times). This came as a shock to many since Mr. Wang only became the creative director of the house in 2013.
His final show at Balenciaga may have been in Paris, but it was all about California. Wang is a native of San Francisco, and for his final Parisian runway show for the French fashion house, he incorporated California themed music. A mix of “Going Back to Cali” by Notorious B.I.G., “California Love” by Tupac, “Ain’t nothing but a G Thang” by Snoop Dogg and a short segment of serene electronic music were the soundtrack of choice. The energetic music that echoed through the speakers did not reflect the serenity of the collection.
Beautifully simple, yet intricate silk pieces in whites and creams were the brunt of the collection. The collection consisted of silk dresses, romper’s and pants, ruffled chiffon dresses, and intricately embroidered cargo pants. The collection was accompanied by flat slip-on shoes, fringed handbags, and gold jewelry gave a relaxed luxury that Mr. Wang is an expert.
In this final show, Wang tried to blend the easy sophistication of the fashion house with his own fun, easy going, young California attitude. The show also featured a few famous friends walking the runway like actress/model Ryleigh Keough, and actress/singer Zoe Kravitz (pictured below).
Famous friends and raunchy music aside, it seemed as though this was the right time for Wang to leave the legendary design house. Being successful in his own right, Wang showed his brand’s collection in New York a few weeks ago, and the contrast between the two is staggering. The collections for Balenciaga, although beautiful, and well-tailored, seem to be a stifled version of the energetic, free-flowing clothing that made Wang such a coveted designer.
Now that he is going back to Cali, we are anxious to see what Wang has in store for his next venture.