A complete wardrobe, the Balenciaga Pre-Fall 2021 collection rethinks traditions of casual and formalwear, inverting intentions to create new categories. 90.6% of plain and printed fabrics are certified sustainable. The largely unisex offering relies on relaxed fits and easy-to-wear pieces.
Tailoring is intentionally creased and large fitting, made in satin, viscose gabardine, linen, crushed nylon, and cotton. A stencil stamp that reads Balenciaga Apparel Rentals accentuates a suit or tuxedo’s timelessness, insinuating it be used forever, by multiple wearers, for any occasion.
Nineties tracksuits have inspired different types of outerwear, from padded coats and parkas to fleece jackets, creating a new trompe l’oeil effect. This is seen as well in retro feminine floral-printed puff-sleeved dresses that are transformed into trench, nylon, and leather coats, keeping the visual of a dress but obtaining a completely new function. Fluid dresses are disproportionally stretched in width, creating slouchy and comfortable one-size-fits-all garments.
Denim skirts turn into shorts in the back. Trompe l’oeil jean visuals are printed on stretch velvet and jersey molleton fabrics, while sweatpants are pre-stretched at the knees to obtain a worn-out look. Tracksuits are seen in traditional nylon but also reimagined in fleece, fused with knit pullovers, and transformed into hoodies and long cinched coats.
Among the new bags introduced in the Pre-collection are Le Cagole, Gossip, Tote 2.0, Bistro Basket, and Maxi Clutch. The Cagole is round-edged where the Neo Classic is sharp, taking identifying elements from the 20-year-old iconic Balenciaga bag and relaxing them, adding extra studs and a heart-shaped hanging mirror. The Neo Classic and Hourglass are made softer and slouchier, too, suggesting both purse and carryall. The Gossip Bag is a pocketbook with extra pockets, featuring a horizontally stretched double-B logo. The Tote 2.0 holds a square shape because of a stiff frame that connects on top with a straightened handle. The Bistro Basket is a woven tote inspired by the everlasting woven objects in typical French bistros.