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This Is What Fashion Week Looked Like 20 Years Ago—All the Highlights From the Spring 2004 Season

Spring 2004… It was a season in which Daria Werbowy reigned supreme—her reemergence last month in a Gucci ad bolsters the idea that fashion runs in 20 year cycles. Also set for a comeback is Phoebe Philo. Back in 2003 she was at Chloé and designed the must-have jean of the season, a high-waisted “mom” model with ’70s flair. Nostalgic for an even earlier time, Miuccia Prada sent dolce vita-era postcard skirts down the runway. Alexander McQueen staged a dramatic dance-a-thon, choreographed by Michael Clark for the designer’s “They Shoot Horses, Don’t They?” collection. He wasn’t the only one with a feeling for action: At Balenciaga, Nicolas Ghesquière hit the waves with scuba-inspired pieces, Proenza Schouler set out to sea, and Y-3 was ready for the pitch.

Helmut Lang pulled inspiration from the sky, referencing the shimmer and ephemerality of the dragonfly in his collection. In contrast, the Marc by Marc Jacobs lineup was an ode to the teenage dirtbag, a figure recently resurrected by meme culture. As if anticipating the AI revolution, Jun Takahashi’s outing for Undercover, titled Languid and shown on “twins” wearing two versions of the same look, anticipated the distortions of technology and the morphing of image and reality.

A.F. Vandevorst Issued Walking Papers



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