“They used to call me the
His big-shouldered, eighties-inflected silhouettes were swashbuckling and his looks were action-packed. Everything from silver astronaut suits, to shearling aviator jackets, fighter pilot jumpsuits and captain’s blazers were given a bright, Balmain make-over. These, along with the oversized great coats and stomping boots, this blockbuster collection had a Marvel Universe heroic quality to it. There were witty elements too – a squishy pink handbag doubled as a neck pillow whilst another smooth leather totem came in the shape of a paper aeroplane.
Rousteing explained that he had been inspired by a round-the-world publicity trip taken in 1947 by the house’s founder Pierre Balmain. He made the journey, via Australia to America, on the advice of his friend the writer Gertrude Stein, who urged him to see himself as an ambassador for French chic, as the country rebuilt its fashion industry after WWII. Post-pandemic, high-flying Rousteing is also looking to the future and banking on pent-up demand for fun, travel and adventure.
Photography courtesy of Balmain.