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This week in Paris, fashion brand Courrèges enchanted its audience with the debut of its Spring/Summer 2020 collection, debuted at dusk on the Canal Saint Martin in a show of lights and smoke. At the head of the procession, vocalist Lafawndah serenaded guests from the water, gliding down the canal by way of boat, before taking to the shore to make way for the parade of models marching down the riverbank.
In the collection, a futuristic aesthetic led the way for a series of self-styled categories, including explorations in utility-inspired outerwear and mesh knits, seen in a selection of patchwork-textured formfitting tops and jackets featuring large pockets and chunky belts. Conventional silhouettes were updated with elements like cape-style hoods, modular cutouts, color blocked fabrics, and unusual prints—seen a blue mesh top and loose-fitting khaki pants with the green details, worn with a cowboy hat; a trapeze dress with the cutout in the front, worn with shoes that featured an exaggerated sole and upturned toe; and a monochrome beige look with a bra top reminiscent of traditional Lederhosen.
Though the season’s new styles were visionary, it was the fabrication that stole the show. The brand employed materials that were chosen specifically to support a sustainable future. With the brand’s Fin Du Plastique initiative, formed around a pledge to stop the use of petrol-based plastics, Courrèges’ iconic vinyl returned to the runway once again, this time created using an innovative algae base, which uses 10 times less plastic than before.
Following the idea that sustainability is not a destination but a process, the brand partnered with Brazillian non-profit, Instituto e, founded by Oskar Metsavaht, to create a series of garments using the skin of the Pirarucu fish. Found in the lakes and rivers of the Amazon, it is one of the largest freshwater fish, and serves as a staple in the locals’ diet. As the skin is discarded after the Pirarucu fish is eaten, it now serves as a creative, sustainable, and ethical new replacement for leather—seen in the collection adding an uncanny texture to collars, overcoats, pants, and shorts.