We all change and mature – it’s called growing up. What we said, did and wore even just five years ago might be looked upon with disgust by ourselves today. Time doesn’t take hostages; move on or be left behind! For the last few years, that’s exactly what Raf Simons has done. Maybe it started around the time he took over at Jil Sander. Whatever his reasons, it is in his full right to further his label and to find new inspirations and influences.
And so he did. Snakes and belts dominated his spring summer outing, and I suppose, in a way, they’re very much related! It started out very plain though. The first handful of models wore simple – but beautiful - suits with white shirts and no ties. Then the first belt appeared. Not in an unusual way (this was after a Paris catwalk show after all) unless you think it’s weird to tie a belt around your suit jacket. In mostly dark colours, Raf continued to challenge his formal wear and coats; he added several belts to one outfit, he attached silk sleeves on top of the jacket, bomber jackets got multiple zips and he deconstructed suit jackets to the point that some only had the shoulders (or the back, or the front…) left and the rest was made out of an entirely different fabric.
One highlight was actually four plain short-sleeved shirts that came out in one go in navy blue, grey, black and burgundy red. They had breast pockets and epaulettes and were the only really old school Raf Simons pieces in his traditional army uniform style. Then the snakes started coming; first as v-neck details, then as full-blown transparent tops and, finally, on jeans. But what surprised the audience the most were perhaps the car shoes. Had you told a hardcore Raf fan a few years ago that he would be seeing car shoes , he wouldn’t have believed you. Raf Simons truly has grown up, and maybe it’s time that we do it, too.