Stella McCartney RTW Spring 2023

Stella McCartney wins gold for the most gobsmacking backstage interview setting — the Atelier BrancusI at the Pompidou Center. Before speaking to journalists, she banged on the bulletproof glass protecting the priceless sculptures to try and get the attention of Jerry Seinfeld and Jeff Koons, who were similarly agog opposite her. “Do you see that? Insane!”

Then she turned around and got right down to business, highlighting the two most important things about her spring show. First, 87 percent of the materials used for the collection were sustainable, her best achievement yet and her first time using regenerative cotton from Turkish firm Soktas. “Look it up,” she urged.

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Second, her dad, Sir Paul McCartney, finally met luxury titan Bernard Arnault, whose LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton took a majority stake in her London-based fashion brand three years ago and appointed her as the group’s sustainability adviser.

The presence of Arnault, and his three eldest children, offered a chance for McCartney to show the most powerful man in fashion what’s possible with mushroom leather, forest-friendly viscose, regenerated nylon, recycled polyester — and without any leather, feathers or fur.

“He can look at all of those bags, all the shoes, all those non-leather jackets and he can compare between his other houses and see that there is no sacrifice visually, or on make or quality,” she said. “I have this incredible seat at the table. And I want to infiltrate from within.”

Nor did the designer sacrifice on fashion thrills, returning to the frisky Y2K spirit she helped define since launching her brand in 2001. One eagle-eyed editor also called up a look from her Chloé days featuring swags of gold chains draped across the torso.

On a chilly Monday morning, in the slanted square in front of the museum, the chains were back, swinging under big mannish jackets paired with off-kilter skirts that trailed on one side, leaving the other leg exposed for that Stella swagger.

McCartney excels at minimalist moments in fashion and her jersey dresses, pinch-waist jean jackets, low-waist pants and corset-boned jumpsuits were sleek and sexy. The simplicity reached a zenith with a white T-shirt to which she had attached an off-kilter stretch of satin for the skirt.

Scuba-like tops, some bedazzled, were fronted with images of the strange, frowning children of Japanese artist Yoshitomo Nara. It added up to a very blue-chip — and very green — morning.

Launch Gallery: Stella McCartney RTW Spring 2023

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