Jacquemus Spring 2017

A bold polka-dot V-neck blouse worn with a wide red sash over skinny pants, with flat, wide-brimmed straw hats. Huge round buttons closing jackers. A frilly long skirt revealing one leg. White blouses with bouffant sleeves.

Many items in Jacquemus’ collection could easily have found a place on the runways of Christian Lacroix, Ungaro, or even Gianfranco Ferré back in the 1980s. But while these designers’ grand gestures inevitably conjured up divas of the Alexis Colby variety, at Jacquemus, these pieces were new ways to express his idiosyncratic message of deceptively innocent, clunky femininity.

This time around the designer looked even further than the eighties for inspiration. His starting point was the nativity scene figurines from the French Provence area, that include a host of characters from the Arlesienne (very Lacroix), though the grandfather and the baker.

The models included veteran Roos Van Bosstraeten, who paraded the clothes against a halo of orange lights. The effect was of offbeat peasant girls, an image that looks fit for Instagram, where the designer is a darling. Not everything worked, as in a gray tunic sprouting tulle around the thighs, and the overall message somewhat lacked urgency. But there were charming pieces as well, especially the wide-shouldered white lace top, and the triangle-shaped black top edged with lace.

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