Glenn Martens went big for Paris Fashion Week. Displaying over 60 looks in a transformed aircraft hangar on the outskirts of the city, Martens brought layers upon layers to his latest Y/project collection. It’s been a busy few years for Martens, too, who is currently designing for Y/Project, Jean Paul Gaultier couture, and Diesel – racks of which were featured in Ye and Julia Fox’s recent shoot for Interview mag. But has this proved to be too much to take on? While this collection for Y/Project was innovative in its diversity and versatility, some key motifs seem to have been, ahem, borrowed from other brands. Let’s get into it.
Perhaps most striking was the abundance of colour in the collection. Infused with enthusiasm and vibrancy, the pieces ranged from more muted, earthy tones to neon screen prints, which we’ll come to later. A royal purple tracksuit-boilersuit hybrid was as at home in the lineup as an all-over shearling look, which actually would have been the perfect fit for watching the show in the exposed Parisian hangar.
As always with Y/Project, movement and layering were at the forefront this season: whilst some fabrics were fluid on the body, others were given structure with the help of wires integrated into denim or suede. Layers of tulle added a transparent but structural element to jackets, and elsewhere woollen pea coats crafted a more conservative silhouette.
Speaking of silhouettes though, Martens seemed to draw on the archives of both couture and 2021 with a look that bore a striking resemblance to the Balenciaga gown Rihanna wore at the 2021 Met Gala. Although admittedly Martens incorporated this as a puffer jacket as opposed to a dress, the hooded, puffy silhouette in black doubled down in recalling the musician’s fit from the Met Ball back in September. In all though, this could have been hinting at Martens’ preoccupation with couture, which he will be showing under Jean Paul Gaultier next week, and looks of which we already saw filtering through into this show.
The collection was also undeniably screaming sensuality, featuring a selection of tops and dresses that emulated the effects of an X-ray in revealing a torso below. However, in their striking neon hues, we couldn’t help but notice their similarity to the designs of Syndical Chamber – a brand already making the rounds of the fashion and celebrity circuits for their body-baring, figure-hugging dresses. From the colour palette to the screen printing technique – we’re not sure Martens will get away with this one, as many online have already begun to point out in the comment sections of posted looks from the show.
Elsewhere though, Martens gave us more of what he does best: deconstruction. One knit was broken down to a series of interlocking lines, forging interesting shapes and cut-outs to what lies below. This technique was replicated with an under-suit jumper, as well as a deep green piece. Chunky knits were layered and tied in an asymmetric fashion, accompanied by matching balaclavas. Bleached, distressed long denim jackets sat between crushed velvet constructions, and a standout look was composed entirely of white faux fur. Throughout this collection, Martens provided something for everyone – and evidently a texture for everyone, too.