Ella Emhoff walks Balenciaga Haute Couture Fall 2021
After a 53-year lull following the closure of the house’s atelier, Balenciaga has returned to couture, debuting its new Haute Couture collection by Georgian designer Demna Gvasalia in Cristobal Balenciaga’s own original salon.
Anna Wintour, Kanye West and James Harden were among the attendants, according to a report by Fashionista, and Vice-President Kamala Harris' step-daughter Ella Emhoff walked in the show. The rising fashion star signed to IMG Models after making a viral impression at President Biden's inauguration.
It was the first time Emhoff modeled in a couture show, and it was a day of many firsts, indeed. In addition to being the first time Balenciaga has shown a couture collection since 1968, it was the first time menswear has been included in the brand’s couture offerings.
As seen below in show's video broadcast embedded below, the Fall 2021 collection begins in silence with a series of stoic, chiseled models debuting oversized-yet-tailored wool suits for both menswear and womenswear.
Staying true to the classic couture presentation format, the first looks were all black, allowing the audience to focus on the stunning silhouettes Gvasalia has come up with. Other monochromatic styles followed, including black-washed denim, floor-length double-breasted coats and satin stoles with shoulder padding.
The line was striking and geometrical. Other standouts included a cerulean blue ball gown/parka hybrid, and a silver faux fox-fur jacket made using an intricate silk thread embroidery technique. The show closed with a few bridal looks. One was a silk jacquard gown with embroidered floral patterns on the front and tailored-trousers peeking in the back. The second was a long-trained classic gown with a full-length veil.
Throughout all of the looks on display, Gvasalia paid tribute to the unique style of Cristobal Balenciaga’s house and the brand’s archives while also infusing the collection with his own forward-thinking vision for fashion's future. The collection plays with texture, cut and proportion and appeals to both the more casual-inspired and luxury tastes of Balenciaga's high-end audience.
See the collection in its entirety in the video below and learn more about the debut runway show via Fashionista.