Sébastien Meunier wore his heart on his sleeve with his collection for Ann Demeulemeester, which made ample use of visual imagery.
The sentence “I am red with love” was embroidered on sheer tops or spelled out on the back of a long cardigan. Delicate chiffon or silk panels, featuring blotchy ink drawings or an embroidered phoenix-like bird, were tied across the body like flags — or declarations of the wearer’s state of mind.
They punctuated a lineup that drew heavily from punk imagery, with bondage pants and open weave sweaters that were tufted with tiny strips of black chiffon or slim feathers. The latter also dangled from the loose strands of pearls that accessorized many of the looks.
When he didn’t go punk, Meunier channeled a “Wuthering Heights” romanticism, with billowing silk shirts and military jackets cinched with wide obi belts. And therein lay the rub: The designer, who took the reins of the label in 2014, still seems torn between allegiance to the founder and a sincere urge to write a story of his own.