Louis Vuitton has gone on a head trip for Spring 2011. “It’s a rhapsody of three virtual scenarios for a digital bohemian, a man who travels the world from behind his computer screen ”says Louis Vuitton’s Men’s Studio Director Paul Helbers under the artistic direction of Marc Jacobs.
“The codes have changed. There’s an eclecticism in the way men dress today from Scandinavia to China and Brazil. It’s a culture clash” says Helbers.
Amazon skydiving inspires the collection’s army issue parachute constructions and lightweight silks. Layered leopard prints provide jungle camouflage, and from China there’s quilting, Classic patterns and animal signs from the Chinese zodiac (interpreted by New York superstar tattoo artist Scott Campbell) come to embellish the ensemble.
The Amazon parka with a military mesh back pocket is sleek, functional and designed to fold away—rather than stuff—into its own bag. Military construction shows in jackets with foldaway hoods and in the parachute jacket, laced up on each side (inspired by the air pressure control of parachute design) with a slim officer’s uniform fit. Pants are ready for anything, but formally styled with sleek self-belted waists, dart seams and tape trim from waist to knee. Caftan shirts, V-neck and loose, adapt to rough or elegant circumstances in featherweight suede or silk damask. Sleeves roll up for both shirts and jackets. And shirts combine silk and knit for an incomparable drape and ease inspired by the Asian attitude where silk is treated as a basic. Tailored two-button jackets are light and unstructured, but hold their shape with a high and defined waist with slight flare in silk, linen and technical nylon.
Formal jackets are pattern-lined. Shirts sport fil coupé bicep tattoos and Chinese zodiac animals, like the fire horse, show all over lightweight pants.
Materials for this go everywhere collection mix technical nylons, elegant silks, soft, washed sea island cottons and linens lightly coated or chintzed to wrinkle just slightly. Technical nylon is roughed up in weathered prints for sun- distressed parkas, textured in a silk blend taffeta weave for an ultra-light trench, or dressed up in the LV digitalized monogram floral for a jacket that’s still unfussy. And silk is washed, quilted and seersuckered for new textural dimension. Leathers go exotic from faded blue python for the body tracing parachute jacket to heavy grain bison leather with a rhino or elephant hide look.
Exotic and earthy colors cross the rain forest to Shanghai from lava to smoke pearl, chartreuse, amber, parakeet green and chocolate chip.
Images via Louis Vuitton / Antoine de Parceval