You could say the stars aligned for Maxime Simoëns today—certainly to the extent that he showed a cosmos-centric collection, inspired in part by Gravity, hours before cinema's starriest night of the year. In the more meaningful sense, the young French designer's ideas for Fall did not always match up. But when they did, it showed how he satisfies his outsize ambition with strong execution. The space theme allowed Simoëns to push the surface detail this season. He coaxed a craterlike texture from rabbit fur by laser-cutting it, and alternated tube-beading in flat and vertical clusters to achieve his bar-code signature as a shimmery relief. He amplified volume by applying mink to sleeves and skirt bottoms, but then minimized it—at least, as a trompe l'oeil—by contouring white "lunar" matte beading along his black dresses. While it was easy to recognize the additional embroidery work as a meteor-shower effect, the less literal striated silvery jacquard made the stronger graphic impact.
Backstage, Simoëns expressed his desire to reinforce his codes with this collection; presumably he was referring to his fitted, long and lean, Parisian take on power-dressing. But his brand is still new enough that it's restrictive for him to think that way. Rather than throwing back to Courrèges and 2001: A Space Odyssey (Simoëns name-checked both), he might consider a leap into the unknown—or at least a plot twist. He has what it takes.