Paris. A drizzly afternoon in February. I’m walking with my 13-year-old daughter behind a young woman in shiny gold trousers, black scarf slung around her neck and a sharp black coat. Her nails and lips are damson-red.
"Make do and mend" was the title of a pamphlet issued to British housewives during the Second World War. It detailed useful tips on how to be frugal and stylish in times of hardship by repurposing, recycling and reusing. Strangely, you felt echoes of that way of thinking at the spring/summer 2016 haute couture, in the expensive and extraordinary clothes created by a handful of houses for a fistful of clients.
At a time when cities are under pressure from growing populations, global warming and worsening inequality, we need to be making the most of our urban spaces. In the face of these challenges, Paris is leading the way toward a more transparent, democratic form of urbanism, to keep the city growing in a fair and sustainable way.