by: Alainia Conrad//
On March 6, 2017, models stomped down the tables of the Richelieu-Louvois Library in Paris, wearing deconstructed knits, plaids and varsity stripes in a kind of remix on the classic school uniform look. This was Rihanna’s latest Fenty x Puma collection for fall 2017, following spring’s pastel-shaded show that was described repetitively as “Marie Antoinette going to the gym.”
For fall, Rihanna and the Puma team opted for a more Crayola color palette, with deep navy and burgundy being offset by pops of bright orange, yellow and green. The school theme is evident, with knits patched with letterman jacket-esque numbers and an “FS” insignia, and accessories including books and bear-shaped backpacks. But the motif is carefully executed in a way that isn’t completely obvious and tacky. Rihanna puts her own spin on the Catholic school classics, bringing in street-wear aesthetics and silhouettes that would violate the dress code of most of America’s learning institutions.
]The skirts of Rihanna’s students are short, with garter straps hanging loosely from the hem. Crop tops are ever-present, complete with straps across the stomach and corset detailing. Checkered satin track pants are worn with the front snaps undone, giving the garment a look more similar to a flowing skirt with cutouts. Staples of the collection include puffer coats and boots, from sock-like designs and lace-up thigh highs to loose-on-the-calves rain boots. Within all of its excess, some of the most beautiful looks from the show are also the most simple, such as a mustard knit jumpsuit with bell sleeves and legs, a pop of lemon yellow trim on the neckline, accessorized with wire-framed glasses and a plaid navy-and-green choker tied with white shoelaces. The final looks fade out the bright colors seen earlier, closing the show with more understated black and white garments, before the final walk and Rihanna herself appearing in a fuzzy bright yellow-green coat.
Fenty x Puma’s latest ready-to-wear offering invokes the spirit of the class rebel— the pink-haired punks painting their nails with a black Sharpie, the girl, armed with scissors and a sewing machine testing the true limits of her campus dress code. And Rihanna is the high fashion version of these kids, constantly breaking the rules and forcing us to think about clothes in previously unexplored ways.
View all of the Fenty x Puma collections on Vogue Runway, at http://www.vogue.com/fashion-shows/fall-2017-ready-to-wear/fenty-puma