The Space Quest
Luxury fashion has always had a thing about the spectacular power of the cosmos and futuristic imagery. With ovoid shapes, mercurised colours, metallic structures and more, Pierre Cardin, André Courrèges “The Le Corbusier of fashion” and Paco Rabanne were the first to explore the creative sphere of the galactic imagination of the 60s, in the midst of the Space Age trend. Using models dressed to look like attractive astronauts, these illustrious designers offered the world some truly timeless pieces, offering a touch of modernity with an anti-gravity effect.
So, when we spotted Balenciaga's Hourglass XS handbag on the catwalks of the Spring/Summer 2020 shows, shining from afar, worn as a crossbody and presented this season in glossy silver leather, we were by no means surprised at the comeback of the Space Oddity spirit.
At Marc Jacobs, hinges and large chain links were quick to set the tone of the season, spreading their molten metal like lava across adorable leather clutches, with lunar reflections and a distinctly Bowie feel. At the MM6 Maison Margiela fashion house, the message is just as clear: from its iconic Japanese tote to its stylish trainers, a spectacular aluminium finish looks set to illuminate our summer evenings and it's a look we can't wait to try. Then there’s the Nodaleto boots completely covered with metallic reflections, the stunning Alexander Wang bum bag, and the futuristic Balenciaga glasses with a Men In Black/Matrix feel.
These accessories from a galaxy far far away look set to protect us from a boring fashion future and are causing a magnetic reaction in fashion experts and neophytes alike. Take the high ankle boots with laces and notched sole by Rombaut, all in white enhanced with a few silver details, which wouldn't have looked out of place on the feet of Neil Armstrong, one early morning in July.
We almost forgot: did you know that Paco Rabanne, something of an alien species at the time, whom Coco Chanel scathingly referred to as "more metallurgist than designer", and father of the iconic "chainmail" dresses, first presented his 1968 bag back in the 1960s with a handle made of… a toilet chain? We can now imagine him looking down, proud and amused at the creations of his spiritual heirs, from the house of Margiela to Marine Serre, spearheads of a new generation of committed designers.
As for us, the lucky ones, when the time comes for Elon Musk and Richard Branson to eventually send us via Hyperloop to spend an evening on Mars... we're ready.