Balenciaga Winter 2022 collection

Balenciaga's Winter collection took place in a life-size snow globe | Source: Balenciaga

Balenciaga Pays Tribute to Ukraine at Paris Fashion Week

“In a not-so-distant future,” Balenciaga writes, “what was once considered ubiquitous – banal, even – is now rarefied, often only experienceable via simulation.”

Drawing guests around a life-sized snow globe, Demna’s Winter 2022 collection was presented on an “infinite white field” amid a “manufactured storm”, a comment on the climate crisis and the world’s current trajectory.

However, before Balenciaga showcased its “pared down and redrawn” looks, hybrid stretch dresses, jersey hoodies and Trash Pouches, attendees were reminded of the current war in Ukraine.

Creative director Demna left a t-shirt in the colours of the Ukrainian flag on attendees’ chairs, along with a notecard acknowledging how the current conflict has “triggered the pain of a past trauma” that the Georgian designer has carried in him since becoming a refugee in 1993.

The notecard also acknowledged how, in a times like this, fashion week feels like an absurdity, a sentiment acknowledged by a number of other designers throughout Milan and Paris Fashion Week this year. Demna detailed how he even considered cancelling but realised that it would mean giving in and “surrendering to the evil that has already hurt me so much for almost 30 years.”

Source: Balenciaga

Following the reading of a Ukrainian poem by Demna himself, the show commenced. Models fought the manufactured elements within the dome wearing stilettos, exaggerated outerwear, black turtlenecks and stretch dresses.

According to Balenciaga’s show notes, “double-breasted suiting and trenches are pre-wrinkled and collapsible, made to be balled up for easy packing.”

As for what the clothes were designed to pack into, the collection presented a rubbish bag-inspired accessory called The Trash Pouch.

Source: Balenciaga

The collection also featured a look entirely made from Balenciaga-branded caution tape, a look which was also worn by Kim Kardashian, who shared the process of having the designer tape applied to a bodysuit before the event.

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