Raf Simons’ Cloistral Street
The two emerging trends in Raf Simons’ Spring/Summer 2016 collection this week in Paris were plaid, oversized hoods that drooped from foreheads down to models’ chins and masked entire faces, and ankle-length trench coats detailed with grommets in meticulous patterns or hand-painted attempts at recreating the hoods’ plaids. Simons said the collection was “very gang,” which might be interpreted as a mixture between the current youth culture and his gang—collections that consistently expose the designer’s infatuation with expression through clothing and his grandfathers, whom he never met. The hoods most obviously reflect today’s streetwear, but their shapes are monkish and fabrics elderly. Additionally, the trenches opened to reveal just as many crop tops as sweater vests. Tight knitwear played a recurring role throughout the collection, which was backed by a soundtrack straight from Mark Leckey’s Fiorucci Made Me Hardcore. A perfect blend of old and new.