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When it comes to fashion, iconic looks are often so much more than meets the eye. For example, during Bottega Veneta’s Fall/Winter 2022 show, models wore white tanks and jeans that looked to be cotton and denim, but were actually entirely leather. That said, sometimes things really are what they seem—and Kim Kardashian’s Balenciaga tape look was, just as it looked, the result of lots of caution tape wrapped around a simple black catsuit.
Truthfully, my wired-for-fashion brain assumed her ensemble was meant to look like strips of tape, but was more than likely one entirely-connected garment. However, it appears I gave the brand too much credit. Rather than build the illusion of a caution tape mummy on the newly-single Ms. Kardashian, they quite literally created rolls of Balenciaga tape and wrapped them around her entire body a few hours before she attended the show.
And in true influencer fashion, Kardashian documented the whole thing on her Instagram Stories. Beneath the tape, she wore a full black catsuit, Balenciaga Knife Boots and an Hourglass handbag.
Kardashian paired the look with Balenciaga sunnies, a defined nude lip and slicked-back strands—and the whole thing really came together quite well. We know from Kim’s Instagram Stories that she sat just one seat away from Anna Wintour, so it’s safe to say the DIY’d ensemble got her seal of approval.
Although personally, I’d proceed with ~caution~ when wearing this to a show. Can you imagine sitting while completely covered in a cast of tape? And not for nothing, but I can’t help but wonder what might’ve happened if she’d had to use the bathroom.
Of course, anyone confused by Kardashian’s ensemble only had to wait for the show to begin to understand it. Look 27 featured a model in the exact same taped-up ensemble, carrying an oversized handbag crafted to resemble a garbage bag. Talk about trashy chic!
All in all, I’d argue there are few celebs who could’ve pulled this look off, and even fewer who would’ve let fans in on the not-so-glamorous construction. Post-show, Kardashian even had her team cut her out of the look so that she could save it for her wardrobe archive. And apparently, Balenciaga even sent her the trash tote to keep with it!
Kardashian’s tape ensemble wasn’t the most important part of the Balenciaga show, however. The brand’s creative director, Demna Gvasalia, sported a Ukranian flag shirt and made a point to speak up regarding Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. He referred to the show as “a dedication to fearlessness, to resistance, and to the victory of love and peace.”
All 525 show attendees found a Ukranian flag on every seat as they arrived, a powerful reminder that there’s much more to consider right now beyond who wore what at fashion week.