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10 brands that have brought aliens on the runaway

The evolution of alien fashion from André Courrèges to Riccardo Tisci

10 brands that have brought aliens on the runaway The evolution of alien fashion from André Courrèges to Riccardo Tisci

Starting from the first moon landing in 1969, from the exploration of Mars in 2020 to the space colonialism of Elon Musk, for sixty years now the world of aliens has been a source of inspiration for designers, there is no stylist who has not enjoyed imagining aliens, but above all imagining dressing them. A futuristic approach to fashion, in stark contrast to the creative direction followed by most brands in recent years: adapting their past to the present, in a frantic regressive race towards everything that is vintage and that in the end does not create anything new. By definition, the extraterrestrial represents the imagination in its pure state, the materialization of an idea of different that reality does not reveal but exists only in the mind of those who create and in the eyes of those who look. And this is why the alien aesthetic represents one of the recurring trends of futurist fashion and generates the most disparate effects, with results ranging from ridiculous to disturbing, but that are always remembered.

Here is a list of 10 brands that have brought aliens on the catwalk and that we must thank if, thinking of an extragalactic invasion, we no longer feel frozen but vaguely amused.

André Courrèges, Moon Girl, 1964

In 1964, while the Cold War went crazy and Russia and America were competing for who will set foot first on the lunar surface, André Courrèges beats everyone on time by launching Moon Girl, a collection that has drastically changed the aesthetics of the time. Dresses and fabrics that celebrate modernity and scientific progress, in the colors of white and silver, with the iconic white square-tipped boots, transparent chiffon tops and thigh-high skirts in geometric shapes, all made of technologically advanced synthetic materials for the times, such as acrylic, polyester and glossy PVC with a wet effect.

Pierre Cardin, Space age and futurism, 1969

In 1969 Pierre Cardin, after his visit to the NASA offices during which he became the first civilian in the world to try on the space suit worn by Neil Armstrong in the Apollo 11 mission, launched Space Age and Futurism, a line designed to dress a galactic woman with tight tights and vinyl details, rocket-shaped pointed hats,  spheres reminiscent of the astronauts' outfit. The end result is halfway between chic and ridiculous, but it's definitely iconic.

Givenchy FW99

On the eve of the millennium bug (a computer defect that manifested itself at the change of date between December 31, 1999 and January 1, 2000 in some data processing systems) Givenchy parades for the autumn / winter furs reminiscent of Blade Runner, severe helmets, combat boots, metallic dresses decorated with embroidery that reproduce electrical circuits, some of which are made of transparent plastic and equipped with flashing battery LEDs:  android couture on a catwalk of silver mirrors.

Balenciaga SS07 & FW19

In Balenciaga's spring/summer 2007 collection, Nicolas Ghesquière takes inspiration from Star Wars for the golden legging-armor on the model of the D-3BO droid. For the 2019 fall Demna Gvasalia carries on the theme by combining haute couture coats in neon colors and oversized hoodies with a cinematic make-up made of red contact lenses and silicone cheekbones, then commenting on everything saying: "It's real, it's what I see on the street when I walk in Paris".

Alexander McQueen SS10

For the Spring/Summer 2010 Collection Plato's Atlantis, McQueen heralds an apocalyptic future and the ecological collapse of the world. The models sport hairstyles that recreate an elongated skull, inhuman features, reptilian motifs and wear grotesque shoes reminiscent of the skull of antediluvian sea monsters, clearly inspired by the works of art by H.R. Giger, a member of the special effects team of the film Alien.


Gucci FW18

Among the sci-fi lovers there is also Alessandro Michele: the Gucci 2017 autumn-winter campaign is inspired by Star Trek. In images taken by Glen Luchford, retro sci-fi-style aliens wearing huge hats, vintage prints, and bery oversized glasses fight a giant dinosaur, while in cryptic teasers posted on the brand's Instagram account, extraterrestrials read mundane jokes from sci-fi scripts in front of a green screen. Two years later, Gucci's creative director returned to the theme for Fall/Winter 2018 by parading cyborgs with the help of Makinarium, the special effects factory loved by Garrone and Ridley Scott, which transformed models into 'post human' creatures with three eyes, two heads and baby dragons in their arms,  against the backdrop of an aseptic and alienating hospital corridor.


Moschino FW18

Jeremy Scott sends Alien Nation on the catwalk for the fall-winter of Moschino 2018, inspired by the style of Jackie Kennedy, but also by the legend according to which President Kennedy had revealed the existence of extraterrestrial life to Marilyn Monroe, giving reason to the CIA to assassinate the actress first and, a year later, Kennedy himself. Scott took the theory even further, imagining that Jackie herself was an alien, so the '60s-style looks reminiscent of the iconic First Lady were revisited with a humorous twist and the models, including Gigi Hadid and Kaia Gerber, walked the runway with their skin painted in pop hues.


Rick Owens FW19

Rick Owens wanted to make his contribution to the alien cause in autumn / winter 2019, parading humanoid creatures with sharp cheekbones, silicone horns, black irises, disturbing makeup including pale skin and scalps that retreat to the top of the head, all in the dark palette that distinguishes the designer, in an atmosphere that is alien, but also demonic.


Iris Van Herpen FW19

In the same year, for the 2019 Fall/Winter Couture collection, Iris Van Herpen takes inspiration from the Macrocosmic Harmonia, a seventeenth-century star atlas and the possibility of an engineered human race, with sinuous silhouettes in the colors of the celestial vault and cloud-shaped dresses in translucent organza created in collaboration with the former NASA engineer,  became an artist, Kim Keever. Iconic is the final dress, with rotating wings made of aluminum, stainless steel and feathers, put into action mechanically.

Burberry SS22

Per la primavera/estate 2022 Burberry presenta forse le aliene più sexy che abbiamo mai visto, con gli iconici trench della maison tagliati per svelare l’intimo, tute metallizzate aderenti, caschi da cavallerizza, ma soprattutto con quelle che sono state soprannominate da Tisci stesso Bambi Ears, orecchie cadenti in silicone che ricordano allo stesso tempo tratti somatici extraterrestri, Dobby the house elf e il celebre cervo Disney.