“Welcome to 2022,” stated a voice as the first model, body bisected by lengths of yellow fabric that left nothing to the imagination, took to the runway for the Parisian debut of Nigerian-born, London-based designer Mowalola Ogunlesi.
Cue a lineup of sleek shapes in pop colors that evoked saucy pulp comics, with abbreviated outfits that showed plenty of skin — imagine ’60s sexpots projected into the TikTok era.
There were cropped suits baring hipbones; hooded minidresses with a vertiginous decolletage; bumster trousers that dipped so low they could have been waders, and long gowns with laced fronts. They came paired with high leather boots or organic looking sneakers, part of a collaboration with New Balance arriving in stores for fall 2022.
Backstage, Ogunlesi explained that she had looked at the “different kinds of thieves and show that no one’s actually a good person” as a way to express the duality that exists within all of us, “without shaming anyone [by] just acknowledging [that side] exists.”
Elsewhere, crosses appeared applied from shoulder to hip on a blouson, or even cutting into the final exit, a floor-length veil that looked cultish.
Their juxtaposition with models walking by with their hands clasped behind their backs as if tied, or their faces obscured while openings highlighted the lower abdomen, gave the collection a dystopian slant.