There’s something strangely enticing in a man who wears fur: at times luscious and decadent, at times savage, at times androgynous, animal hair has the rare quality to conjure a masculinity that is both inevitably primal and utterly sophisticated.
Designers were particularly vulnerable to the lure of the wild this season, and they couldn’t help turning their men into boy versions of Venus in Furs: Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana dressed their models as an army of Medieval kings, crown-clad and wearing oversized, armour-like fur and shearling coats. The effect was imposing and slightly ominous, like a Barbarian invasion.
"Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana dressed their models as an army of Medieval kings, crown-clad and wearing oversized, armour-like fur and shearling coats"
At the other end of the spectrum, Hedi Slimane made a rock 'n' roll asset out of animal hair, opening the Saint Laurent show with an outrageously shiny charcoal mink coat and inserting leopard panels in varsity jackets and leather perfectos. In between, Kris Van Aasche explored the contemporary Dior man through a floor-long, fur-lined reversible coat and several nylon parkas with white hair hoods. At Lanvin, Alber Elbaz and Lucas Ossendrijver were equally civilised, inserting midnight blue and black shearling on sweaters and zip-up jackets.
At Givenchy, Riccardo Tisci used brown mink on the collars of most of his coats and - in a stroke of streetwear genius – printed trompe l’oeil hair on his sweatshirts. Dries Van Noten dyed his fox scarves in acid shades of yellow, green and blue. “Rave and Renaissance”, uttered the show notes. Irresistibly tempting, we might add.
Text by Marta Represa