Balenciaga unveiled streetwear’s ultimate fashion fantasy at its Spring 2023 fashion show, held at New York City’s historic Stock Exchange building. Following a slew of pitch-black suits and overcoats that would have appealed to the Wall Street bankers that populate the place, the runway switched to an edgy tone with the Balenciaga x Adidas collection.
Baggy tracksuits with dropped hemlines, oversized tees and hoodies, football jerseys, denim jackets, jeans, and belted and padded robes came down the runway, a rehash of the athleisure signatures that we have come to expect from the designer formerly known as Demna Gvasalia.
What was different was the branding: the clothes were stamped with the Adidas Trefoil logo alongside with the Balenciaga name, or else had the sportswear brand’s Three Stripes running on the sides of sleeves or trousers.
The models’ faces were obscured by gimp masks—Balenciaga has a thing for appropriating from the BDSM community, as Kim Kardashian’s 2021 Met Gala look demonstrated—which emphasised the unisex nature of the collaboration. And, unlike the vibrant Adidas collaboration from its Kering labelmate Gucci, Balenciaga mostly focused on drab colours with flashes bright, sporty red, all the better to suit Demna’s moody aesthetic.
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