Fashion Week: Milan struggles

“boring”, “monotonous”, “predictable”. “Mums”. Here’s what we can sometimes hear about Milan Fashion Week, where the women’s fall-winter 2020-2021 shows take place until next Monday. Of course there is the indestructible luxury made in Italy, the inimitable quality of the leather and fabrics, the ancestral know-how of the artisans of the country, the incredible and, it is said, innate elegance. Not to mention the Italian savoir-vivre, between presentations in sumptuous palace and cocktails in hidden gardens. But in terms of fashion creativity, the Lombard capital lags behind London – spicier – and above all behind Paris – more dynamic, more flamboyant. However, something is moving within the walls of the Lombard capital. We can even say that it is bubbling, despite the absence of several hundred journalists and Chinese buyers, due to the corona crisis.

New models

Hundreds of people flocked to Moncler on Wednesday evening, including American actor Will Smith, muse of Moncler Genius. genius? This is the name of the project launched in 2018 by Remo Ruffini, the CEO of the luxury down jacket brand. Every year, Genius invites eight fashion designers to shake up Moncler’s DNA for a limited-edition collection. A business model that goes against the traditional system where brands assure the services of one artistic director through fantastic contracts.

The result is astonishing. Inside a huge smoky hangar, eight rooms with radically different atmospheres. Room 1: inflatable log roller on Max Richter. Mannequins zigzag at full speed. They wear improbable down jackets with thorns, yes, with thorns, like ninja turtles that have swallowed brambles. Pink, blue, yellow. In their hands, bags printed with ducks in the bush, homotheties of quilted chains. It’s weird, it’s beautiful, it’s insane. It belongs to JW Anderson, one of the most talented fashion designers today. Room 2: romantic-gothic universe. White lace puffer jackets and PVC trench coats by the English designer Simone Rocha. Chamber 3: Springs under LSD. Puffer dresses with baskets, big retro flowers even on the hood. Thank you Richard Quinn, English designer who likes to put the fingers of elegance in the socket.

About Fashion Week 2019: In Milan, fashion is confronted with its conscience

In Milan, fashion is therefore exploring new avenues, wondering how to talk about luxury with those under 40, how to occupy the grounds of the new digitized world. We have done our homework well at Emilio Pucci and Moncler. Known for its psyche prints in acidic tones, this Italian house has had six different artistic directors over the past twenty years. In order to arouse the interest of the public, she is for the first time in the punctual collaboration by inviting Christelle Kocher to design the autumn-winter 2020-2021. A champion of Italian glamour, in the hands of a street couture champion, you had to dare.

And it was a great idea. We had never seen so many mixtures, crossings of references, influences, cultures at Pucci. Neon silk babydolls worn as day dresses with fishnet tights. All the street paraphernalia – hoodies, denim jackets, sweatpants – revisited in baroque prints. A silk scarf escaping from a bucket hat, pearls dripping down a flashy logo T-shirt. All this flirted with bad taste, or rather another taste, far from the clichés of the Italian bourgeoisie. Will the formula ever hold up, far from this pompous staging in a 16th-century church? To have.

strong woman

Historically, the great Italian houses such as Gucci, Versace or Bottega Veneta have been the epicenter of Milan Fashion Week. And while these brands have stayed true to the traditional “1 brand = 1 designer” business model, some continue to amaze. There is, of course, Prada, who often de zeitgeist† Queen of a sober and perverse glamour, Miuccia Prada likes elegant and strong women, who are able – like she in her youth – to demonstrate with the communists on the heels of Saint Laurent. To scan social events on the courtyard side while reading Karl Marx on the garden side.

This season, paradoxes dominated the catwalk: Large tweed men’s blazers worn with airy skirts with fringes that reveal the skin. A big coat shearling covered in pink lacquer worn with strict black cropped pants. Pencil skirts with rain boots. City moccasins painted with dreamy flowers. Fabulous silk pajamas from the sheath as uniforms. The silhouettes sometimes lack lightness, too many messages kill the message. After all, it’s about: the clothing must serve the complexity of female identities.

Fendi was also about women’s bodies and hearts. And by tackling this theme, Silvia Fendi has become a clothing magician. There were those unforgettable gray felt jackets with their “Helium” balloon sleeves. Sleeves that gave the silhouettes of the 1940s a stunning strength and modernity. There were also those ultra-tight dresses with trompe-l’oeil corsets, those pleated leather skirts with maddening drape. You also got to see the surgical cuts of the dominatrix gowns along the way, as well as the lightness of the silk dresses. Strict and tender at the same time, these outfits spoke of a double femininity, which unfolds just as much in a boudoir as in a conference room. Drawn and determined, these women face the future without fear of others or themselves. Their haughty head posture testifies to this. Several revolutions are underway in Milan.

Also read: Fendi, Roman fire

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