Maison Martin Margiela
October 01, 2009 Paris
The press release announced that this collection was an investigation of "volume and texture" (but aren't they all?). In brief, the texture was paper and synthetic foil; the volume, various experiments in adding frontal attachments to jackets and extensions to the hind quarters of cutaway chaps. There was a lot going on with bodysuits and baggy scrunched-down boots, which at certain points involved trailing tapes. That was followed by an apparently random sequence of hyperreal tropical-scene photo prints—they looked like a genuinely bad-taste echo of Miuccia Prada's deliberately kitsch prints of the same sort of subject matter.
For the purposes of a "summery" theme, those prints will certainly provide bright T-shirts and commercial-looking printed beach bags to bulk up the Margiela stores. Some long, slim dresses might also appeal to the existing Margiela customer, once they're made less sheer, and shorn of the chains that dragged in their wake. Yet as streamers exploded overhead and the models came dancing out in white paper T-shirt dresses in a celebratory finale, nothing could dispel the deepening mood of despondency that sank over the exiting crowd.