What Is Vogue World: Paris? The Stories and Mood Boards Behind This Once-in-a-Lifetime Event

Two fictional characters informed the gear worn by cyclists from the French national team. Their mask-like headwear nods to an antihero of crime fiction dreamed up by writers Marcel Allain and Pierre Souvestre, Fantômas. “He’s clearly a thief but a very chic thief,” jokes Samson. The oil black silk bodysuits reference the getup of silent-film actor Musidora (a.k.a. Jeanne Roques), who is especially known for playing the vampish Irma Vep in Les Vampires.

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Fantômas poster, 1947

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Les Vampires poster, circa 1915

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1930s: Track and Field

Cristóbal Balenciaga moved his couture house in 1937, and the following looks by the current creative director, Demna, are re-creations that he oversaw of two looks lost to time. Using photographs, a sketch, and a newspaper clipping, the house resurrected a Velásquez-inspired fringe dress from fall 1939 and a graphic stunner in black and white slipper satin from fall 1940. Read more here.

Balenciaga by Demna

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Balenciaga, fall 2024 ready-to-wear

Photo: Isidore Montag / Gorunway.com

Balenciaga spring 2024 readytowear

Balenciaga, spring 2024 ready-to-wear

Photo: Courtesy of Balenciaga

The remake of Balenciaga’s fall 1940 couture dress

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The fall 1940 Balenciaga remake

Photo: F.Fior – I.Montag – A.Lucioni – D.Oberrauch – S.Dragone / Gorunway.com

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From the Balenciaga archives

Illustration: Courtesy of Archives Balenciaga Paris

The remake of the Balenciaga fall 1939 couture dress

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The fall 1939 Balenciaga remake

Photo: F.Fior – I.Montag – A.Lucioni – D.Oberrauch – S.Dragone / Gorunway.com

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The panniers on Balenciaga’s dress were inspired by Las Meninas by Velásquez.

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A series of looks in black and white evoke Old Hollywood glamour.

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Avellano, fall 2024 ready-to-wear

Photo: Kristy Sparow/Getty Images

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Rick Owens, fall 2024 ready-to-wear

Photo: Courtesy of Owenscorp

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Olivier Theyskens, spring 2023 ready-to-wear

Photo: Courtesy of Olivier Theyskens

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Givenchy, fall 2024 ready-to-wear

Photo: Alessandro Lucioni – Gorunway.com / Courtesy of Givenchy

Mad for Madeleine Vionnet

Madeleine Vionnet is credited with mastering the bias-cutting technique that defined, in part, the long, sensuous silhouette of the ’30s. Her kind of glamour was inimitable and based on technique. Maison Margiela’s 2024 couture look nods to Vionnet.

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Two Madeleine Vionnet evening dresses

Illustration by René Bouët-Willaumez, Vogue, April 1, 1936

Maison Martin Margiela spring 2024 couture

Maison Martin Margiela, spring 2024 couture

Photo: Filippo Fior / Gorunway.com

Homage à Dietrich

“In the ’30s Marlene Dietrich was forbidden to enter Paris by the mayor because she wore pants,” Samson says.

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Keiona Revlon performing in Nina Ricci

Photo: F.Fior – I.Montag – A.Lucioni – D.Oberrauch – S.Dragone / Gorunway.com

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Marlene Dietrich, 1930

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Nina Ricci, fall 2024 ready-to-wear

Photo: Courtesy of Nina Ricci

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Kendall Jenner in a dress by Burc Akyol, 2022

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Armani Privé, fall 2005 couture

Photo: Marcio Madeira

Balenciaga spring 2024 readytowear

Balenciaga, spring 2024 ready-to-wear

Photo: Courtesy of Balenciaga

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Mugler, fall 2024 ready-to-wear

Photo: Daniele Oberrauch / Gorunway.com

Snazzy Schiaparelli

The house of Schiaparelli moved to the Place Vendôme in 1935. The Italian-born designer was noted for her penchant for waist-up dressing and her witty collaborations with the Surrealists. A skeleton dress made with Salvador Dalí in 1938 has been reinterpreted by the current creative director, Daniel Roseberry. Read more about Schiaparelli.

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Elsa Schiaparelli in her atelier on the Place Vendôme, 1935

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Schiaparelli in her atelier

Illustration by Cecil Beaton, Vogue, March 1, 1935

Schiaparelli spring 2024 couture

Schiaparelli, spring 2024 couture

Photo: Isidore Montag / Gorunway.com

Schiaparelli spring 2024 couture

Schiaparelli, spring 2024 couture

Photo: Isidore Montag / Gorunway.com

FKA twigs Causes a Flap in Alexandre Vauthier

“Wearing head-to-toe Alexandre Vauthier, she brought a modern-day flapper energy to the Les Années Folles section of the evening, posing and vamping around the Colonne Vendôme in the maison’s vertiginous platforms,” wrote Hayley Maitland. Read more here.

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FKA twigs in Alexandre Vauthier

Photo: F.Fior – I.Montag – A.Lucioni – D.Oberrauch – S.Dragone / Gorunway.com

Maluma Out-Gatsbys Gatsby in Thom Browne

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Maluma in Thom Browne

Photo: F.Fior – I.Montag – A.Lucioni – D.Oberrauch – S.Dragone / Gorunway.com

The Mad Dash: Course de Garçons de Café

“I was wondering how we could connect track and field with fashion and Paris,” Samson says, “and I remember that in every city in France since the beginning of the 20th century, there is a run, Course des Cafés. Each café brings one waiter with a tray, some glasses, water, and wine, and the waiters compete by speed walking in the streets. It was just relaunched in Paris two months ago.”

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The participants represented 16 Parisian cafés and wore Fursac outfits.

Photo: Marc Piasecki/Getty Images

1940s: Aquatics

This section of the show was “very South of France inspired,” said Samson. The stripes “are emblematic of the French beach houses, and it is also the 10-year anniversary of a collection from Jacquemus called Les Parasols de Marseille. These parasols always have big stripes, so we asked him if we could give this a modern take [and consider] the influence with the bikini.”

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Sabrina Carpenter in Jacquemus

Photo: F.Fior – I.Montag – A.Lucioni – D.Oberrauch – S.Dragone / Gorunway.com

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Jacquemus, spring 2015 ready-to-wear

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Jacquemus, spring 2015 ready-to-wear

Photo: Kim Weston Arnold / Indigitalimages.com

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Chanel, resort 2025

Photo: Isidore Montag / Gorunway.com

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LGN Louis Gabriel Nouchi, spring 2025 menswear

Photo: Filippo Fior / Gorunway.com

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A model in a Quicksilver wet suit and Chanel shoes with a Chanel surfboard.

Photo: F.Fior – I.Montag – A.Lucioni – D.Oberrauch – S.Dragone / Gorunway.com

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Acne Studios, fall 2024 ready-to-wear

Photo: Isidore Montag / Gorunway.com

Miu Miu spring 2024 readytowear

Miu Miu, spring 2024 ready-to-wear

Photo: Filippo Fior / Gorunway.com

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Jean Paul Gaultier, spring 2003 couture

Photo: Style.com

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Jean Paul Gaultier, spring 2020 couture

Photo: Alessandro Lucioni / Gorunway.com

Duran Lantink spring 2024 readytowear

Duran Lantink, spring 2024 ready-to-wear

Photo: Filippo Fior / Gorunway.com

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A model in Fifi Chachnil

Photo: F.Fior – I.Montag – A.Lucioni – D.Oberrauch – S.Dragone / Gorunway.com

“Right after the war in 1946, just before the New Look, people really struggled, of course, but wanted some lightness,” says Samson. “The bikini was designed in 1946 by two designers, Jacques Heim and Louis Réard.” Synchronized swimming and Esther Williams’s movies were also touchstones.

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