Anaïs Jourden took us back to school in the library at the Lycée Henri IV, which is among the most prestigious secondary schools in Paris.
The collection featured many sheer and ruffle dresses, covered in metallic micro polka dots and animal stripes. Double-breasted jackets and slouchy cardigans paired with longer metallic or lace skirts portrayed a modern, rebellious young woman, who not only defies the norms of femininity, but also the dress code of an institution. Hong Kong-based designer Anaïs Mak put her mark on this collection with irregularly shaped hearts that appeared as hoop earrings, custom buttons, appliqués, and even seductive nipple patches.
The show ended with two models walking down the runway holding hands and sharing a white veil with flowers. This SS20 season in Paris, there were quite a few designers that added singular bridal pieces into their shows, but Jourden’s presentation was unique and progressive in a subtle way—we don’t often see two beautiful brides on the runway. The models walked to “L’amour Est un Oiseau Rebelle” (“Love is a rebellious bird”) from Carmen. Interestingly, the opera Carmen was based on a novella by Prosper Mérimée, who was a student at this very school—coincidence?
The clothes were retail-ready and had a provocative, free-spirited vibe embedded into them. Anaïs Jourden’s description of the show was a strange poem, that ended with “Let’s learn as we go along, let’s rebel and become.”
Photos: Vedant Gupta for The Urban Watch Magazine