Travel tags are officially in fashion — at least according to John Galliano, the Maison Margiela creative director who launched “bags as headwear” last season, and who has just returned with the debut of models covered in travel tags.
On the runway at Paris Fashion Week on Wednesday, travel tags made of leather were seen looped onto leather satchels, backpacks, shoulder bags, and belt loops, and even reworked onto the clothing themselves. The tags were labeled with a range of airport verbiage, such as “Approved Carry-On Baggage,” “Crew Bag,” “Rush,” “Priority,” “First Class,” and “Business Class.”
But it didn’t end there. Galliano further incorporated those extra-long, sticky, barcode-laden travel tags by printing them onto the pleats of a floral skirt and shirt collar. On one model, a collage of paper travel tags was worn as a headpiece.
Because the theme was clearly airline travel, models naturally accessorized their looks with eye masks and neck pillows, a trend also seen in the recent Balenciaga x Colette collaboration, which focused on high-fashion branded travel accessories.
All this might seem ridiculous, but neither Maison Margiela nor Galliano are known for conventionality. Instead, they’re all about décortiqué, a fashion design concept that essentially means “deconstructed fashion.” Rei Kawakubo (of Comme des Garçons), Dries Van Noten, and Ann Demeulemeester are just a few other designers who have embraced this methodology, creating fashion collections that look and feel somehow dissected or unfinished.
The technique was on display in several of the Masion Margeia SS18 looks, such as a cutout shirt that had the framework and silhouette of a shirt, but lacked both its “finished” quality and physical functionality.
The Margiela brand also tends to repurpose household or everyday items and place them within a high-fashion context — handbags that looked like crinkled brown paper bags, for a previous example. This season, Galliano extended this idea by creating plush leather bags that looked like pillows.
Still, there were still a few wearable pieces in the mix, such as a plaid skirt, a trench coat dress, a camel coat, and a gold shimmery pleated dress.
And if there’s one main takeaway from the collection? Start saving those luggage tags.