By Brooke Knappenberger, E23 Reporter

Paris Fashion Week marks the end of the month-long slew of fashion shows, and it proved to be quite the ending. It seems the biggest names were saved for last. Balmain, Louis Vuitton, Chanel and Valentino were among the huge fashion houses that presented collections in the city of love.

Across the fashion industry, designers are responding to the current political climate and movements such as #MeToo and #TimesUp. Designers in Paris continued many of the same trends from the previous fashion weeks. Plaid, ‘80s fashion, sparkly pieces and power suits were seen all over the runway in the last couple of weeks and throughout PFW. Designers are emphasizing women empowerment and femininity with these common trends, and hopefully, they are here to stay. While many of the shows at PFW had similar trends, some collections are worth mentioning on their own.

As always, the Chanel show proved to be a major moment of PFW by transforming the Grand Palais into a forest complete with a tree-lined runway and a carpet of fallen leaves. Of course, the collection had classic Chanel looks like matching tweed suits, but there were many looks that were new and refreshing. Creative director Karl Lagerfeld took a small stray away from the typical Chanel look and incorporated streetwear into the collection. Puffer jackets lined with tweed and even flowing hoodies were spotted on the runway; however, the looks were still glamorous with extravagant jewelry. Headscarves, long vibrant gloves and huge tote bags were other standout pieces in the collection. Chanel never fails to present an amazing collection, and this year proved to be no different.

A tweet showing the Grand Palais transformed into a forest

Among the collections from PFW, Alexander McQueen particularly stood out to me for many reasons. The collection had a range of looks that showcased individuality and personality. From sleek tuxedos to long feminine gowns, the collection presented a look for every woman’s style. I loved the subtle nods to nature in butterfly-printed dresses and the gorgeous beading resembling beetles. It’s also refreshing to see an inclusive cast of models of every race and size on the runway. Creative director Sarah Burton did an excellent job of including a wide range of styles for all women.

A tweet showing a model in a pink dress at McQueen's show

Lastly, Christian Dior produced a more explicitly political show with a runway covered in protest signs, feminists slogans and magazine cutouts from the ‘60s. The collection channeled the 1960s student-led protests in France and the current political climate to create looks that embody women empowerment. The show started off with recurring trends like plaid and suits and gradually became more in tune with the ‘60s. Quilt-like prints, patchwork denim and crocheted dresses prove to still be in style for Christian Dior’s creative director Maria Grazia Chiuri. The collection connected the ‘60s to today with looks that took decades-old trends and reimagined them for the present.

A tweet showing a model at Dior's fashion show wearing a sweater that reads "C'est Non, Non, Non et Non!"

For fashion lovers like me, the end of the succession of fashion weeks is a sad time. The endless fashion shows and street-style looks are over; however, there is still plenty to look forward to. New York, London, Milan and Paris fashion weeks marked a huge shift in the fashion industry. Designers became politically active and symbolized their vision for an equal world with their collections. I’m anxious to see what designers have in store for next season, but until then, I will be happily scrolling through the numerous collections in my free time.

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