WHILE everyone consistently thinks about the future, Anthony Vaccarello‘s tenure at Saint Laurent has been a continual ode to the past. Referencing certain decades within the seams and silhouettes of his collections, it seems apt that for spring-summer 2024, the designer decided to unveil in Berlin’s Neue Nationalgalerie.
Envisioned by German-American architect Ludwig Miles van der Rohe, this building in the capital was the last major project by him, embracing steel and glass in its structure and in turn creating a statement that oozed attitude.
Continuing to develop his ideas of who the modern Saint Laurent man is, Vaccarello returned to the intersection of femininity and masculinity. Bringing hints of his previous womenswear collection into SS24 menswear, new configurations of recognisable pieces debuted in Berlin. What however did remain was the key silhouette that plays with proportions, maintaining light construction at the top, with an airy feel whilst the bottom half is tight, giving way to high-waisted flute trousers.
Also echoing this same contrast is Vaccarello’s twist of shoulders, either exaggerating them or keeping them entirely slouched, both referencing past collections from the French House’s founder.
Despite the vigorous contrasts, familiar motifs like polka dots, that arrive this season re-proportioned, draping and leopard prints return to the Saint Laurent design catalogue, and stripes make a welcomed arrival.
In true Vaccarello fashion, elements of couture are injected into ready-to-wear as mousseline enters the fabric offering; the classic tuxedo is given a further sex appeal push with a long-cut body-floating satin tank and halter-neck cuts on tops add some androgyny to the very streamlined SS24.
At this point, Vaccarello can do no wrong. And though there are few surprises in his collections, what maintains is a high-level of prowess when it comes to the Saint Laurent brand. Continued nods to the history of the brand are evident in how the collection evolves, and yet he whilst caters to his customer who is in need of unfiltered glamour in a world run by trends – and both know that the classics never go out of fashion.
by Imogen Clark