Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Nonchalant Minimalism

These photos were taken outside Le Grand Hotel in Paris right after the Balmain SS11 show in September last (last!) year. While everyone was snapping away at the Balmain-clad ADR, (including me, until I spied otherwise) Mademoiselle Agnés snuck past, largely unnoticed by the blogger throng. With her Zanotti for Balmain satin booties and that amazing leather panelled Celine coat, how could you not notice? It's quite striking when seeing these two distinct looks, fashion poles apart, in the one frame. While Anna, God love her, is proud in her 'maximalist' style, not occasionally showing up to a designer's show in one of their earlier creations (that she's never worn before, no less), Agnés' style is much more minimal. It's not refined to extent of minimalism's trademarked sleek hair and Calvin Klein, but certain elements are certainly pared back. On reflection, I understand why Agnés didn't receive the same amount of attention as ADR, and I think it has less to do with the level of fame, and more to do with the style. Something so simple (if Balmain and Celine are considered simple) are donned by the wearer more often than not to have that effect; so they are the ones wearing the clothes, not the other way around. A plain pair of skinny army-green cargos tucked into heeled boots, teamed with a loose tee the same colour as the straight-lined jacket. Easy. Effortless. Just like dressing should be. Perhaps we can coin a new term in reference to this French sort of minimalism, after all; many a French editor (Emmanuelle Alt and Geraldine Saglio to name two) have this look down to a (ripped) tee. Nonchalant Minimalism. 

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