Men’s fashion heads for India | Lifestyle.INQ

OCTOBER 27, 2022

WIDE lapels and slim, elongated pants at Louis Vuitton for Spring- Summer 2015 RUNWAY PHOTOS COURTESY OF LOUIS VUITTON
WIDE lapels and slim, elongated pants at Louis Vuitton for Spring- Summer 2015. RUNWAY PHOTOS COURTESY OF LOUIS VUITTON

“While last season’s collection was about looking down at earth from above, this time we are looking up at the stars.”—Kim Jones, Louis Vuitton men’s style director



True to the spirit of Louis Vuitton’s heritage, travel played a very essential role in Kim Jones’ latest oeuvre. He took to the streets of Rajasthan, also known as the Land of the Kings in India, and discovered Sawai Jai Singh, the king who built the Pink City and the Jantar Mantar in Jaipur.


The stage design, a white geometric structure inspired by the Jantar Mantar—an astronomical observatory garden (filled with gigantic, man-made instruments made to calculate astronomical observations)—set the tone for Jones’ Indian-inspired collection.


It’s important to note that while the colorful Indian city and the observatory provide the stimulus, Jones’ collection is not a literal interpretation, but a discreet reinvention, tempered by a very ’70s British silhouette and tailoring with military references, making the collection contemporary, albeit slightly retro.


The show opened with a wide-lapeled, streamlined belted trench with slim, elongated pants and a high-necked shirt evoking that ’70s vibe, forerunner to the double-breasted suits and slim pants combos ubiquitous in the collection.


The palette may have been an indication of the Indian terrain: tan coats and leather goods treated to achieve a vintage finish; blue like the lakes of Udaipur; white T-shirts treated with the collection’s caravansary elephant color on Indian-style super mercerized cotton; shirts inspired by Indian turban fabrics and embroidery motifs; and patterns in bright Indian pink and saffron.


Moreover, there were key elements that took center-stage in reference to Indian inspiration: Shisha mirrored embroidery with LV engraved mirrors (an inherently Indian craftsmanship) coming to life in a jumpsuit and bomber jacket; the Louis Vuitton Karakoram motif, herringbone formations on short-sleeved shirts paired with more defined, retro high-waisted trousers in military colors like khaki and brown; and the brand’s logo in a huge, stylized V-shaped patchwork in Indian colors on polo shirts, calling to mind India’s chic maharaja sportsmen.


INDIAN INSPIRATION. Palette that ranged from khaki to Udaipur lake-blue and bright pink, and Shisha embroidery with LV engraved mirrors in a jumpsuit

 Special technique


A special technique used to create the large-scale multicolor Karakoram motifs in blue, shocking pink and orange come from India’s Mothra tie-dye technique, which places the dots very tightly as a traditional mark of social rank.


The V-motifs that seem to echo the mountains of Rajasthan, also signifying the brands new triple-V logo (Volez, Voguez, Voyagez), appeared as metal embellishments on bomber jackets and embossed on some leather goods.


Military elements provided the basic canvas and undertone. We saw jumpsuits (in different variations) reminiscent of fighter pilots, one designed in shocking pink. The use of pink may also have been a reference to Jaipur’s pink city, or what they call “Indian pink.”


Luxe silk epaulettes appeared on trench coats and pullovers, and huge front pockets adorned the streamlined shirts, calling to mind Indian military uniforms.


The brand introduced this season a noteworthy innovation—twill leather, which comes alive in a trench coat. At first glance it looked like it was made of twill fabric, but it was actually natural cowhide leather. This leather was also transformed in a military flight suit as well as wool twill trench coats with suede epaulettes.


Very much in keeping with the theme, introduced were special edition trunks, a guitar case, a desktop case, a records case and a composer’s case designed to hold music paper, ink and notebooks in sumptuous aged natural cowhide—key pieces that integrate the whole collection, with the luxe wanderer in mind.


The monogram appeared discreetly on the interior of bags and selected leather bags, and trunks were pre-tanned to mimic aged, vintage leather; the V-bag collection, made of an exclusive light, supple and water-repellant leather, signed with the Gaston V, are multipurpose and built for modern city slickers.


The bridge sunglasses, inspired by Sawai Ram Singh’s sunnies, became the signature eyewear.


MEN’S accessories and shoes from Louis Vuitton Spring-Summer 2015, and the brand’s new triple-V logo stitched on a bomber jacket (top left); model Jon Kortajarena. MELA DE LUNA

With sneakers becoming a stronger trend every season, Jones interpreted the now  fashion staple in luxe alligator in black and white, proudly made with great Louis Vuitton savoir faire, and stitched preciously by hand.


This season also presented its very first jewelry collection. Necklaces made with semi-precious stones, like malachite pendants in the shape of guitar plectrums, signified a very Indian attribute, a love of luxurious ornaments and accessories.


Jones’ discreet military references modernized and tempered the stylized Indian elements, balanced out by the ’70s-inspired silhouette of a narrow semi-high waist and elongated legs.


In the end, he brought forth a collection that was trendy, a little retro but still well-refined.


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