The catwalk in Milan and the refuge value of ‘Made in Italy’ | Style

A year ago, the Russian invasion of Ukraine surprised designers by showing completely relevant collections. Created months ago, they celebrated the exit from Covid with excessive, ostentatious staging and displays of strength. By the time these collections could be presented, Putin had invaded Ukraine and none of it made sense. Furthermore, the public demanded an initial position of the fashion industry, which so quickly becomes involved in social movements, but, as vast as it is, the response was slow in coming, however forceful it was: total isolation, no restrictions. Application and closure of stores in Russia. Faced with this situation, and although the Russian market accounts for 4% of the total exports of the luxury industry, the fashion houses had their fill. And the result has improved the proposals of the Milan catwalk. The more austere proposals seem to have been favored by not being able to satisfy a lavish, exuberant public with a view of superficial luxury.

Matthew Blazey, the discreet star behind the Bottega Veneta renovation, presented an eclectic collection on Saturday night where delicate fabrics mixed with oversized coats, tailoring, brocades, increcciato, Absolutely; light skins, already recognizable color palette (garnet, beige, aqua green, white); The fringes that finish woolen garments are their classic jacquard, It was, as some fashion editor said, streetwear, which is not the same Street wear (fortunately). Dresses to wear for all occasions, a good wardrobe to invest in in uncertain times. Clothing that will never go out of style. But also see what Italian design means, or what it means to the world. Gio Ponti’s Superleggera chair was the furniture chosen to seat the audience, while Castiglioni’s Luminator lamps added warm points of light, and in the center of the set a sculpture by Boccioni in which two entwined bronze torsos gazed through different perspectives. represented the Milestone Tour. Country. All this Italianness had one end: to claim the DNA. With this proposal, Blazey claimed a “positive nationalism”, as he himself defined it, with the intention of re-enacting history from an open and non-hostile place.

A model presents a creation from Bottega Veneta’s Fall/Winter 2023/2024 collection during Milan Fashion Week on February 25, 2023. Alessandro Garofalo (Reuters).

This idea of ​​revisiting its origins is also the backbone of the Dolce & Gabbana collection. Six months ago they had Kim Kardashian to design it, but this time they’re going away from aesthetics influencer To reintroduce an aspect that had not been exploited for a long time: tailoring, focusing on high quality, but not flashy clothes. “This is a pure Dolce & Gabbana. We focused on the cut of the clothes, on the perfect fit, on using the best wools, the best silks, but without giving up the sensuality”, he said at a press conference before the show. explained. That premise was embodied in gauze and transparency, “more lingerie than corsetry”, elegant and light; jacket suits and jackets as a dress; double lapel coats, suede, all black in gold, silver and red With some touch of colour.” We weren’t inspired by it, but when we realized it, the collection reminded us of the collection we presented in 92. belle du jour”, explained the designers. They also intended to have their own collection, update it and claim “we are a highly sought after brand in the vintage market”. they are. Dolls from the late nineties and early 2000s are trading very high. It seems legit that they are the ones who continue to mark that move.

Three creations by Dolce & Gabbana on the catwalk in Milan on February 25, 2023.Matteo Bazzi/Alessandro Garofalo (EFE/Reuters)

If there is an icon of Italy in the world of fashion, it is Giorgio Armani. Not just because I’m still making their uniforms, something anyone who hasn’t been on Mars for the last 40 years can make freehand: loose-fitting pants with ankle cuffs; a jacket with a mandarin collar or without lapels; Asian influence, metallic luster. and women of free movement, a desire that Mr. Armani knew to read from the start, as he is one of the most careful interpreters of the context in which his creations will live. It is no coincidence that he was the first to suspend the parade in February 2020 due to Covid, nor was he the first to speak out against the Russian invasion of Ukraine last February, when he removed the music from his parade .

Detail of Armani Creations on the catwalk in Milan on February 23, 2023. Alessandro Garofalo (Reuters).

While Armani allows itself to be true to itself and distill its very individual proposition through the years, Maximilian Davis, at Ferragamo, underlines a new relevance for the firm with his second collection that has become an object of desire among the people. fabulous kids, This time around the English designer moves away from colour, brightness and Y2K silhouettes to propose an exercise in restraint, minimalism and tailoring, without abandoning the hallmarks of the Florentine house. “I think it’s a play with house codes from the eighties and nineties. It’s a current trend and I wanted to transfer it to today”, he explained to the press. behind the scenes,

Todd’s collection created by Walter Chiapponi departed at the same time. Also cool of rigid construction with derivations of manly suits and aviator jackets. At the door, behind a banner written in Chinese, crowds of fans were gathering after spending hours at the door of the Pirelli hangar where the parade was held. the reason? They were expecting Xiao Zhan, Todd’s ambassador in China and the undisputed star. This, which sounds like an anecdote, is not. The opening of Chinese borders and the return of buyers and publishers is essential for the good health of the industry, even more so for European ones. If the Russian public tends to excess, glitter and expensive In fact, The Asian public is more interested in the old European style, so this testimony of Italian manufacture, classicism and heritage brands is not only a question of romanticism, but also a question of the market. And it’s global. Both New York and London Fashion Weeks, with the Burberry arrival of Daniel Lee, also based their proposals on safe fashion, safe haven prices: clothes to sell and clothes to wear.

Three Gucci outfits on the Milan Fall/Winter 2023/2024 runway on February 24, 2023.efe

This moment of transition from one market to another, between bold and restrained proposals, between fashion to be photographed and fashion to be worn, Gucci takes it back in its transition. While Sabato di Sarno comes in-house and creates its first collection, the design team took to the catwalk on Friday to present a bold, diverse proposal, mixing styles precisely with style. Going through the history of a banner that has marked important milestones, he reviews two thousand of Tom Ford’s retrieving bags Horseshoe of the Texan, who is also a highly valued piece in the circuit vintage, and so relaunching it seems like a good business strategy. Body-hugging silhouettes, sensuality, glitter, debauchery and lots of skin to pay tribute to the man who revived Gucci in the nineties, but mixed everything with whimsy and Quirky Alessandro Michele is responsible for revolutionizing not only the brand, but also the way 21st century fashion is understood.

The bridge that the house creates between De Sarno and Michele is a wise and reasonable decision that will avoid comparison and allow the retainers to separate from what the Roman designer has given them. The set context, where the models come out of the lift and appeal to their respective workspaces at home, once again in a commercialized way, is an internal look to justify that proud nationalism. Because what’s more Italian than Gucci?

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