Disco amateurs, fur balls and Sam Smith at Christian Cowan’s first Paris show

Enter the American Cathedral of Paris, home to Cambridge and New York-based designer Christian Cowan. staged his first performance in the French capital. Under the vault of the 19th-century church, artificial fog hung in the air as blood-red lights illuminated guests in the front row, which included cool girl DJ Ally Space and a host of influencer regulars. What about gender? It was covered in anthracite gray and matted faux fur.

Christian Cowan – Spring-Summer2024 – Womenswear – France – Paris – © Launchmetrics

You can believe Cowan’s Spring/Summer 2024 girl doesn’t stand in lines at nightclubs – she knows who’s working behind every door in the city. Models strutted to blasting techno tunes in black patent buckled combat boots and deep V-neck minidresses, or what is expected to be a typical late night outfit.

Cowan introduced two signature party girls for next season, and we met a downtown club rat sharing the catwalk (or was it the dance floor?) with an old socialite. If revealing sequined dresses and cone-shaped bras adorned with crystals were the name of the game at this temple of celebration, so were long satin dresses lined with fur in black or amethyst. Giant camellias also adorned the shoulders of a soft pink tweed suit and took the form of a denim halter top or miniskirt.

Cowan hinted that fur would be a theme for his Paris show, posting photos of a mega furball in front of the Eiffel Tower and fluffy skin covering a baguette on the brand’s Instagram days before the event. And we can confirm that faux fur has indeed become the star of the show, taking the form of a long white coat draped over the shoulder, a plunging crop top or a charcoal pantsuit. It even seeped through the details, decorating the hem of skirts and dresses. But the main decoration must have been the giant fur balls that were worn as a separate outfit and surrounded the models from neck to hips.

Christian Cowan – Spring-Summer2024 – Womenswear – France – Paris – © Launchmetrics

The wedding dress itself was a massive sphere of ivory synthetic material with a floating white trail attached to it. The model, dressed as a disco ball, also repeated the same shape and dazzled her way down the runway.

Sam Smith, Cowan’s rumored boyfriend, appeared midway through the show (announced in a press release weeks earlier), wearing an inky faux fur cape and perched on a rotating platform. Multi-award winning artist whose song Stay with me won a Grammy for Song of the Year back in 2015, paid tribute to LGBTQIA+ icon and lead singer of 1980s pop group Dead or Alive Pete Burns with a hit song: You’re leading me by the nose. His voice was clear and crystal clear, contrasting with the cacophonous remix of the backing track, which forced the models to keep up the pace. As he stepped off the podium, a dancer crawled behind him on a leash.

From party girls to party girls, it looks like Cowan’s longtime taste for the performing arts isn’t going to stop anytime soon. And to this, in the carmine-lit halls of the American Cathedral, we say “Amen.”

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