But Is It Fashion?

Was this fashion show a big gay disaster, or pure genius?

The world of high fashion is always aiming to make a big impression. Vivienne Westwood’s latest show for Paris Fashion Week is no exception — but it caught the public’s attention for all the wrong reasons.

The label’s Fall/Winter 2024 collection — designed by the late Westwood’s husband Andreas Kronthaler — took inspiration from Renaissance paintings and Scottish Pagan tradition. But what actually came down the runway had the internet scratching its collective head.

For starters, the show featured a trio of dancers breaking out some truly one-of-a-kind moves, including an upside-down straddle complete with rhythmic ass-slapping.

Those dancers are Simon Mayer, Matteo Haitzmann, Simon Wehrli, a Vienna-based folk dance trio. The dance they’re performing is a traditional Bavarian style called the Schuhplattler — though to the untrained eye, playing one another’s butts like bongos doesn’t call to mind grand European tradition.

Then there was the surprise star of the show: singer Sam Smith, who modeled two looks in the collection. The first was especially controversial, featuring a green top, a plaid cape, an inexplicable wooden staff, and — most egregiously — what can only be described as a tartan diaper. The whole look is giving nonbinary wizard, aka “Gandalf the They.”

Don’t get it twisted: Smith’s nonbinary identity has nothing to do with the ugliness of this outfit. As one commenter wrote on Instagram,  “I don’t care what your beliefs are, if you see these images and aren’t thrown off spiritually, I don’t trust your judgment or discernment.”

This Vivienne Westwood show was undeniably a chaotic mess, but is there anything the gays love more than a soon-to-be camp classic?

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