“IT’S A JUNGLE out there” – a concept that Stella McCartney has fully embraced in her AW20 fashion show at the Paris Fashion Week. While the British designer is most known for her leather-, fur-, feather-free approach to designs, this time McCartney added a visual representation of her cruelty-free policy to the show by including models dressed as animals walking the stage. An amusing spectacle and yet an important reminder from McCartney that animals are always present at the fashion shows, but unfortunately not in such a lively way as hers.

Known for her pioneering use of fabrics, Stella McCartney’s AW20 included even more alternatives to animal-based fabrics than before. While the trench coats were made from vegan leather and oversized fur was indeed faux, the collection was also McCartney’s interpretation of the art deco works of the French-born Russian artist Erté, manifesting itself in collection’s neutral tones of khakis, browns, and greys.

While the focus of the show was primarily on discouraging animal cruelty in fashion, McCartney’s AW20 collection was actually an ode to strong-willed and powerful women with a free spirit. Blurring feminine and masculine silhouettes together, McCartney’s collection included lumberjack layered check in rebellious red and dark hues.

“Women are the fearless, the pioneers, the disruptors, the visionaries,” noted McCartney before the show. Embracing femininity and the spirit of defiance, McCartney’s powerful woman was seen wearing silky dresses, tunics and slouchy suits abundant with embellishments with a jellyfish or a shooting star motif – yet another reference to the art of Erté.

Ever since its launch in 2001, Stella McCartney has been the leader in the ways of using vegan, animal-friendly fabrics and materials. Although her AW2o collection was dedicated to powerful women, its Paris show became a plea to the fashion world – a plea to adopt a more ethical, cruel-free and therefore modern approach to fashion design, especially in such a crucial environmental crisis we are facing now. And we’re only hoping that the fashion world will follow.

by Lexi Fadina

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