January 19, 2011 Paris
Today's soundtrack was Felix's house classic "Don't You Want Me" distilled into pounding marching music for an army of models whose extreme youth, unusual for the designer, made one wonder if his thoughts about the concept of service and sacrifice had set him brooding on the Children's Crusade, one of the most tragic examples of devotion to an ideal in the annals of Western history.
You just know that Rick Owens is one of the very few fashion designers you can go to primal places like that with. But if there's always something primal about his shows, there is nothing primitive about his clothes. Fall 2011's jackets and coats were spectacular exercises in cut, from the slightly cutaway blazer that opened the show, to the closing flurry of coats. The duffel coats in black or white leather that clasped with two fiercesome metal toggles were the sort of stand-alone pieces that might seduce a man who wouldn't be caught dead in Rick's dresses. "A guy wearing a dress is such a functional thing," he insisted. "Easy as a flannel shirt. Extreme and practical at the same time." From his lips to your ears....