‘Twas quite the garden party at Louis Vuitton’s Spring/Summer 2023 show, which took place at Paris’ Louvre Museum on Oct 4. And while all the traditional elements were there: floral prints, billowing blouses, dainty, colorful hosiery, and frilly dresses, there were some very untraditional ones as well. In fact, it seems creative director Nicolas Ghesquière took the “go big or go home” adage and, well, ran with it.
Firstly, there was the jaw-dropping set design, the brainchild of contemporary artist Philippe Parreno and production designer James Chinlund, which included a crimson “monster flower” for the models to march through. That should’ve been a dead giveaway to attendees of the larger than life show that was to come.
Yes, it seems the common feminine elements of spring were literally supersized as the often more minimal accessories — belts, earrings, and hardware — were enlarged and made to be the more focal point of the ensemble, as opposed to an afterthought. “Femininity is at the heart of the matter and Louis Vuitton joins the conversation: looking at it through emphasis, glorifying its complexity, magnifying it, putting it in the spotlight,” read the official show notes. “It's a stylistic exercise that re-evaluates the proportions of clothing and its adjuncts, one in which the codes of femininity unsettle scale.”
Unsettle, indeed. The vivacious collection was a single file procession of unexpected look after unexpected look. Feathery shift dresses were thrown atop lacy T-shirts and offset with large, clunky knee-high lug-sole boots. Leather trapeze-style halter frocks and tops featured dramatic thick straps at the neck and hemline. And everything from trench coats and blouses to dresses and mini skirts included jumbo zippers and buttons that felt surreal and almost cartoon-like.
Another oversized element that stood out as a worthy trend for 2023 was the waist belt. Serving almost as armor, the supersized leather accessory was shown in neutral colorways, from camel to black, and included gold hardware to up the luxe factor. And while statement belts have quietly been making their way back into the style sphere this past year, Ghesquière is seemingly announcing their return with gusto.
One more key fixture? The presence of large, statement bags. Teetering on the unwieldy and surreal, jumbo clutches and even a house-shaped handle bag proved over-the-top accessories are coming for you hard in the coming year. And, while these exaggerated looks may seem intimidating at first glance, the brand presents them as a sort of formulaic balancing act that’s not only approachable, but wearable.
“The infinitely large and the infinitely small come together on silhouettes, inviting a second look,” explain the show notes. “The Spring/Summer 2023 women's collection zooms in on the details, highlights them, gives them their due.” Said details are also an homage to the heritage brand’s roots. “What's more, these are integral to the genesis narrative, the DNA of the Maison,” reads the notes. “A lock, a label, a clasp, a corner piece on a trunk, a buckle, a zip... These are the custodians of a story that endures.”
Check out more of the supersized collection below.