Milan Fashion Week A/W2020 Round-Up
Milan Fashion Week gives way to Paris and THE FALL looks back on the shows that kept us talking the most
Milan Fashion Week A/W2020 was for the artisans and their legions of admirers. Luxury and quality reigned supreme and Milan even managed to fend off the current coronavirus pandemic while the world’s fashion media and buyers were inspecting their wares – just. The inter-city competition each season to stage the best and most spectacular show season between London, Milan Paris and even New York (coming up on the outside) means everyone had to be on their A-game or get swallowed up by the creative tide. Milan and their showing designers, as always, rose to the occasion and we pick out a few of the collections that had us discussing them long after the final wedding dress had left the stage:
From her design studio based far outside the fashion rat race in Cattolica near Rimini, Ferretti brings us another classic collection with an edge for the winter that was tailored to within an inch of its life. The colour theme was greys, blacks and silvers punctuated with sudden bursts of bright primary colours to add intrigue and interest. The other things to notice were the variations of a particular kind of silhouette on show – slim, high-waisted trousers leading up to fuller creations that gave the visual impression of long-stem flowers. As Ferretti herself said, the collection was made to challenge the established ideal of femininity and instead trade on a newer, more modern look for women that draws from male aesthetic ideals. Power dressing at its best.
Highlights of the collection however came with the aforementioned bursts of colours which were used to especially stunning effect on the layered ruched dresses in bright red and candy purple as well as fashion-favourite black. Special mention has to go to the metallic silver ruched jump suit cinched at the waist with a gold belt that lit the place up.
Giorgio Armani doubled down on luxury for winter 2020 with the use of black velvet throughout the collection. There was something particularly attractive about the sheen of reflected light the deep space black material created as it moved down the catwalk in various pieces. The long black coat was magnificent in it, outlined as it was with contrast white piping along the edges. The long, exquisitely tailored dresses with the military style fringed epaulettes on the shoulder also caught the eye on a number of occasions.
Elsewhere, candy pink again became one of the stars of another fashion show. The ribbed, round-necked jacket was especially pleasing in the colour, as was the pink bolero jacket with fringed, black horizontal stripes running down its length. Coming second in the Armani colour stakes was lime green – as seen in the patchwork faux fur coat on a black base, and the voluminous plus-fours worn with knee-length black boots and a black figure hugging velvet jacket with ornate neck detailing. If Armani is synonymous with glamour then the most glamorous look of the night had to be the amazing silver/grey diamante trouser suit that featured hints the favoured candy pink at the sleeve hems and neck.
Black, dark green and dark blue (and various shades thereof) would accurately describe the colour palette of the entire Emporio collection for this winter. Sometimes a very light grey was introduced offer a different perspective but it was clear where the heart was. Comfort and wearability were also two key watchwords, with loose tailoring, wide-legged trousers and cute mini-shorts making numerous appearances. Luxurious black velvet also punctuated this collection, this time adding green and blue velvet to the roster in the form of two-piece pyjama suits and single-breasted jackets.
There were also numerous versions of the black and white check at play as well that added new visual dimensions to jackets, coats and trousers, while the green and blue, ruched, halter neck mini-dresses and the metallic green, one-shoulder cape told their own fashion stories. It was still that old staple, the Little Black Dress – this time strapless, delicately layered and ruched and tied off with a fanciful black diamante encrusted bow at the bust – that won the day in a collection of so many high points.
Fendi’s beautiful A/W 2020 collection introduced us to an entirely new silhouette in their repertoire – the boxed sleeve. It was a feature throughout the show, appearing on may different types of garments – stunning grey wool overcoats, futuristic, candy pink satin dresses, chunky knit roll-neck jumpers, ruffled salmon blouses and even delicate, off-white cardigans. If ever a collection came with a recognisable new signature for a season, this was it.
Of course, that signature is built on the luxurious basic quality synonymous with Fendi. The military-style black leather coat was cut to perfection from a leather that looked soft enough to wrap a baby in – even without the new sleeve construction. Best of all though was the salmon pink playsuit that exaggerated the boxed sleeve effect and combined it with a sensual keyhole neckline that might not provide much protection from the elements this winter but will definitely bring the house down when the coat you’re wearing eventually comes off.
Gucci’s extraordinary collection could arguably be characterised as a hybrid of peasant and fairytale chic. It was a theory only underscored by the almost doll-like models in the show and its deliberately static nature. The colours and their combinations were amazing. The dusty pink of the multi-layered, ruffled, frontiers woman style dress was perfect coupled with the black lace edging and black wide-brimmed hat. This stood in stark contrast to the beaded, orange hippie-chic velvet top worn with a bandana and loose ripped jeans. This was definitely a collection for the eclectic amongst us.
Elsewhere it was the shapes on display that drew the attention – like the schoolmarm, floor-sweeping, high-waisted and billowing red tartan skirt that was coupled with a cream lace blouse and gloves. Or there was the 60s funk of the short, black horse fur style coat with the giant white fur cuffs, hem and lapels that was paired with aquamarine gloves and bright red tights. In all of the different stories being told there was also the little gem of the little off-white page-girl outfit with navy trimming and worn with long white socks. We’re not sure why the model was made up to have tears streaming down her face because this is one of the looks that made us the happiest.
Jeremy Scott’s new winter collection for Moschino served to reinforce our notion that he is one of the few mad scientists of fashion left at the moment – along with the likes of Jean-Paul Gaultier and John Galliano. So while Pannier style, super wide-hipped skirts may not make for the best commuter wear, it’s the only thing to wear if you’re looking to make a real statement at the next award show or red carpet. Scott even subverts the vintage style by making the skirts mini and using a variety of modern fabrics like pink leather and blue denim. There’s even a gorgeous beige trench coat in the style.
The theatrics didn’t end there, either. Vivid colour combinations were everywhere, in velvet brocade, floral silks and electric pink satins. The icing on the cake, however, came in the literal form of a cake. The four-tier wedding cake dress adorned with orange and white roses with cherub decorations screamed ‘artistic impression’ and showed why Moschino shows are always one of the most enjoyable and memorable to watch each season.
Numero Ventuno (as it’s officially known) has a well deserved reputation for modern, contemporary styling made for metropolitan city life. Creative director Allessandro Dell’Acqua leans heavily into that aesthetic for his new winter collection. Familiar pieces are given a unique twist at the edges to offer something new and innovative to challenge our preconceptions. So dresses become ‘two-faced,’ with one side of the dress a completely different style to the other. Or long tailored coats that gently curve out towards the waist and then taper rather than slim down towards the waist and then flare.
Two colours dominated the proceedings, emerald green – especially effective when used in the multitude of sparkling sequins used across many of the dresses and skirt/jacket combinations – and an earthy terracotta brown for blouses, silk dresses, chunky knitwear with fabulously over-long sleeves and – best of all – a soft leather jumpsuit cinched at the waist with a matching wide leather belt and sporting similarly over-long sleeves.
The Prada ideal of creating an accessible and utilitarian form of ultra-luxury fashion was on display again for winter and still just as desirable as it ever was. Naturally, tailoring acts as the basis for that ideal and the slate grey jackets, overcoats and skirt suits all described a 1940s style professional female silhouette but for the modern woman who doesn’t compromise on comfort nor creative style. Even then Muiccia didn’t let our eyes become too lazy. Some skirts were deconstructed to be entirely wide-fringed all the way up to the waist, giving the impression of a grass skirt when the wearer sashayed down the catwalk. Then there were the black coats that were just a mass of layering and fringing and movement.
One of the real show-stopping styles of the collection came with the over-sized, single-breasted, over-padded jackets in leather, a style that was replicated somewhat in the sumptuous short hair, faux fur jackets that came before. The stand-out piece however was the sleeveless dress completely adorned with glass beading and lightly dusted in purple hues. If the rest was for how Prada wants you to spend your days, this dress was definitely how Prada wants you to spend your nights.
The Italian luxury leather goods house continues to evolve in their business with the latest ready-to-wear collection announcing they are now firmly a major force to be reckoned with in the market. The first thing to remark on with the collection is the cut. Everything accentuates or exaggerates the lines of the body perfectly. Suit jackets are generously tailored and crisp, as are the single and double-breasted coats. The deep purple single-breasted coat with the wide lapels was beautifully tailored at the waist and flared towards the hem to accentuate the feminine form. A number of ensembles played with that form by presenting long layers with short – long and short coats over mini-dresses, mid-drift bearing tops under short shearling leather jackets and short jackets coupled with flowing, calf-length skirts.
Two ensembles that really caught the eyes were, firstly, the smooth, black leather, long-sleeved mini-dress worn with nothing but long legs encased in bright red tights and, secondly, the impossibly short, brandywine, strapped leather dress worn over a pouffed white blouse. Both outfits capped a remarkable collection for A/W2020.
For our London Fashion Week A/W2020 click here.
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