By: Elihle Gwala
For most people it usually takes years even multiple decades of working in the fashion industry for them to find themselves heading major fashion houses. For the young Asian boy named Alexander Wang it was the total opposite. After becoming one of the youngest people to ever head a French fashion house at age 28 a few seasons ago, Alexander Wang has found a way to work his personal aesthetic into that of the legendary house, Balenciaga.
Wang’s first collection for Balenciaga honoured Cristobal Balenciaga’s initial aesthetic and it was this collection which proved that the directors of the house had not made a mistake by appointing him to be the creative director of the French house. Ever since that collection Wang has never looked back, with each of the five collections that he has produced thus far he has been finding a way of creating a younger look for the Balenciaga girl, a look that is more true to him as a designer. In an interview with Elle Magazine he was quoted saying “I just did what was coming from my heart” he further said “You don’t always have to do everything at once.” Well if that’s the case I guess we can all say we trust Wang’s heart. After a spell binding, electric (literally electric) collection for his self-named fashion house in New York it was only normal for everyone to also expect such genius and out of this world creativity for his Fall ’14 collection at Paris Fashion Week (PFW).
Without totally alienating the old Balenciaga customer Wang keeps drawing some tailoring inspiration from Cristobal yet he keeps showing us his vision of a new Balenciaga, a younger, sporty, imaginative and darker type of vision.
This season Wang offered a visual feast filled with a number of minute details and some not so small, like those industrial-strength zippers placed pretty much everywhere on the clothes. The structures of the clothes were the ones true to Wang’s aesthetic. The colours were similar to those from the Pre-Fall collection even though some were a bit more vibrant.
Balenciaga proves to be one of my personal favourites for this season. If you ever want to reference a Balenciaga girl into your personal wardrobe just think youth-chic with an elevated sense of luxury and elegance.