Riccardo Tisci’s fall men’s collection for Givenchy didn’t have the spanking newness and shock value of last season’s tropical escape, and there’s a reason why. The designer is apparently in a nostalgic mood, preferring to sample the major themes of his brilliant four years designing men’s. Again we saw nods to Americana and high-testosterone masculinity, expressed here in an unusual minotaur reference. It made for an endearing show, if something of a déjà vu.

Just like his first men’s outing, Tisci offered an abstract reworking of the American flag. A miniature version of the Stars and Stripes served as a dark logo on jackets and sweaters, while wide stripes appeared on polo shirts and stars adorned box-pleated kilts.

In his men’s pre-fall collection from earlier in the week, Tisci explored denim for the first time. The legendary fabric resurfaced here as kilts and jackets, braided Chanel-style, but with zippers.

The knee-high, studded boots drew from the classic derbies worn by Italian immigrants when they arrived in the United States in the 1940s. Precious sweaters and shirts, gleaming with jet embroideries around the collar, closed the dimly lit show, held in a transparent tent that offered a view of the beautiful Hotel des Invalides, bathed in carnal red light.

So what do minotaurs have to do with all this? They inspired the crystal nose rings that dangled from the models’ nostrils and covered their mouths. Talk about kiss-proof jewelry. 

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