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Petar Petrov and Romain Kremer at Men's Fashion Week SS '10

Ana Lee writing for I V Y paris

Saturday, June 27th, 2024, Petar Petrov held his fashion show at the Espace Saint Martin in the 3rd. In squelching hot heat, we waited in what looked like a Pharaoh's tomb - now turned sauna - one of the space's many themed entrance halls. As guests were seated and fanning themselves, the DJ teased us with the intro to Michael Jackson's "Beat It" in homage to the late artist, but also uplifting the mood at the end of a long day. Finally a variation of the song came on full blast and so the show began...

Petar Petrov and Romain Kremer Show

Models came down the runway sporting eyewear reminiscent of anachrome 3D glasses. The clothes came in shades of bisque and honeydew in both jersey tops and tailored cigarette trousers - note even a pair of bubble shorts hitting just above the knee. A key accessory was to wear a contrasting pair of leather lace-ups, or pointed boots to enhance a smart silhouette. While most of the line remained casually chic in muted colors, inserts of red punctuated throughout, first introduced as imprints on t-shirts to likes of bullet wounds, then full volume on a pair of patent leather pants.

This imagery on injury continued the following day at Romain Kremer's show, located at the Maison des Métallos in the 11th, where the French designer explored the theme in a more literal sense. The collection began with a fully veiled model in a white ensemble, eyes covered to the double with a pair of sunglasses. Again we see a transparent organza windbreaker (recurrent in many of this weekend's men's collections), and then it becomes interesting. Kremer plays on the concealment of the face (When the eyes are hidden, is the model a victim? When his mouth is masked, a terrorist?).

This play on hide and seek continued through a series bandeaus worn about the body, on thighs, ankles and torso, which could be perceived metaphors of lacerations - enhanced by a soundtrack of pleading and explosions. The concept became more evident as the designer cut layers of holes from zip-tops exposing the stomach, which reminded me of cartoon violence; as the sombre theme evolved, in came a conflicting palette of cheery deep purple and alizarin crimson.

All in all, both shows were equally fascinating as both explored different approaches to the idea of "wearing one's wounds"; one collection more wearable as the thought was implicated in small detailing, the other loudly visual but equally intriguing.

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