Cover JW Anderson Menswear Collection SS21 (Photo: Courtesy of JW Anderson)

From Dior's two-part film, to Loewe's show-in-a-box, here are our shows to watch from Paris Fashion Week's first digital edition

Paris Fashion Week Menswear shows have followed in the paths of previous European fashion weeks, ascending to digital platforms to showcase their newest menswear collections.

Losing the constructs of traditional shows has clearly not limited these designers, as each brings a refreshingly unique perspective in their navigation of the digital realm. Following four-day digital extravaganza, here are the shows to hit the replay button on from this year’s Paris Fashion Week.

JW Anderson

Above (Video: JW Anderson on YouTube)

Jonathan Anderson has never been one to settle. Packing a miniature version of JW Anderson’s SS21 inside a beautifully wrapped box, Anderson uses the platform to sit-down and walk the viewer through his latest collection and how he has been using the pandemic as an opportunity to reinvent the way he’s approached creativity.
Featuring sustainable initiatives such as backpacks using recycled bottles and recycled polyester as well as knitwear inspired by his late grandmother, Anderson talks us through a new classism he’s building within his brand – and the ultimate catharsis he feels in returning to the roots of his designs.

See also: How Jonathan Anderson Became One Of Fashion’s Most In-Demand Designers

Dior Homme

Above (Video: Christian Dior on YouTube)

Pops of colour and rigid textures paint the picture of Dior Homme’s SS21 collection, centred around portraits by Ghanaian artist Amoako Boafo. Split into two acts, Dior Homme uses its digital platform to dive into Boafo’s story and highlight details in their SS21 collection.

Wide sashes, leather berets, and knitted portraits are only a few of the motifs in Kim Jones' latest collection for Dior Homme; masterfully rendered into an aesthetic that feels refined yet contain an energy that is wonderfully dynamic and edgy.


Above (Video: Hermès on YouTube)

Hermès has opted for the ultimate unrehearsed, rehearsed live performance – using the backstage as the set itself, cameras follow models as they go about their usual pre-show routine: from taking selfies to last minute touches by their make-up artists.

Directions in French add to the glamorous reality of it all, though it doesn’t distract from the sunshine yellow accents and black horseshoe necklaces which layer upon jackets and shirts, elevating the effortless feel that's impossible to miss with this collection.

See also: 10 Questions With The Queen Of Hermès


Above (Video: Fédération de la Haute Couture et de la Mode on YouTube)

With a similar format – but very different in execution – to Jonathan Anderson’s eponymous brand, Anderson takes to compressing his latest collection with Loewe into a vintage dossier: sending it in a box to fashion editors across the globe.

The dossier gives a glimpse into Anderson's brain – featuring everything from a letter from Anderson himself, to a recording of a conversation between the designer and an actor Josh O'Connor, to cutouts that form a mini runway show in the editors' own homes once put together.

Accompanying the dossier is a sit-down with Anderson available to the public as he walks through the collection, which is characterised by a newfound volume in the pieces and use of traditional techniques. From the traditional Japanese dyeing technique Shibori to create a light versus shadow effect, to basket-ware to create a top – it is fascinating to see these techniques which have been around for decades reinvented in a contemporary fashion, and even more so to even take a dip into the extent of Anderson's comprehensive thoughts behind each piece.

Maison Margiela

Above (Video: Courtesy of Maison Margiela on YouTube)

This short experimental documentary by Nick Knight gives an unprecedented glimpse into John Galliano's creative process for Maison Margiela. There is much to digest in this short film, which is titled "S.W.A.L.K." – an acronym for "Sealed With A Loving Kiss" and previously used by soldiers in wartime to sign off communications to loved ones.

There is much to observe from Knight himself as well, as he uses unorthodox methods of filming in a time of social distancing: from drones, GoPro body cameras, to screen recordings of Zoom calls. 

Galliano walks us through the research he undertook prior to designing this collection, his slow move into sustainability, and his return to circular cutting – a technique he had previously used at his eponymous label and as creative director of Dior, where bias-cut gowns are draped upon the body. Calls with Pat McGrath, renowned celebrity make-up artist, and hair tests with Eugene Souleiman, are also witnessed by the viewer. This is in an effort to become more transparent, "a new consciousness clarified by the illumination of the creative process and the human values it represents" as observed in the film's accompanying notes.

See also: Digital Paris Haute Couture Fashion Week: Highlights From Chanel, Christian Dior And More