Evolution, not revolution, is the Christophe Lemaire
MO. "The more I work with the same idea in mind, the more I find ways to make it work," he said at a presentation of his new Spring menswear. And accordingly, there was much here that looked like timeless Lemaire: the rounded shapes, the multi-pleated pants (which Lemaire has been doing for season after season, long before the current vogue for the style). Lemaire plants his designs at the unlikely nexus of workwear and new wave, managing to reference both David Byrne's big suits from Stop Making Sense
(in a passage of gray tailoring) and Chinese workers' uniforms. For Spring, he merely pushed forward. He's incorporating more color than ever before, and while the palette remains on the whole slightly dusky, there was the welcome addition of ocher and mauve. A paint-drip print, inspired by David Hockney, pointed at new lightness ahead. Light, in weight and in feeling, was the word for his first forays into denim. Lemaire cut a boxy, oversized T-shirt, a pajama-style top, a vest, and pants from dark, tissue-thin Japanese fabric in indigo and smoke gray. And despite being personally "very anti-shorts," he debuted his first pair, a pleated, belted gabardine version that hit just below bermuda level—"almost a colonial one," he called it. Slowly but surely, the times, they are a-changing. "I wouldn't mind going even further," the designer said.