Italy's always had a flair for the dramatic and this season – anything goes. The fantastical fairy tales and tongue-in-cheek collections imagined by this year's designers are anything but subtle. From Cavalli’s sea of flames and D&G’s journey into the woods, to the ridiculous antics pulled by Moschino, the theatrics of Milan remind us to not take fashion (or life!) too seriously, whether it comes to engaging in some creative storytelling or having a little bit of fun.
On both the streets and the runway, we see trends in luxurious and colorful furs of various animals and textures, 90s pop culture and neon colors, balloon silhouettes, and the layering of puffy coats or top-heavy pieces over skin tight, cigarette pants and bottoms.
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An echo to the James Franco documentary The Director screened in Paris this January, Gucci gives us a generous dose of 60's glamour and 80's mod. The film explores the rise of creative director Frida Giannini, whose polarizing 60's floral line launched her to commercial glory in 2004. Pinned as “boyish romanticism” by Giannini, she would drape chubby fur jackets of all textures (from curly teddy bear shearing and goat hair, to beaver and mink) over slim, sleek lines for a balloon-like silhouette.
The models kept it mod with snug peacoats, cat-eye makeup and pastel mini-dresses with knee-high go-go boots. Taking a starring role was The Jackie, a squashy shoulder bag often worn by Jackie Onassis during the decades inspired by the collection. Full of flirty, fondant shades and poppy pastels, the Gucci woman will be wearing a soft palette of baby blue, sage green and mustards this season.
Thanks to Jeremy Scott, fashion’s most evolved connoisseur of junk culture, McD’s reconfigured golden arches became a Fashion Week social media icon. That, along with the "groan inducing" late entrance of Rita Ora and Katy Perry, made for an ingenious and entertaining debut – and just enough drama to satiate his love affair with the press.
For his first collection with Moschino, Scott gave the line a post-modern pop fashion treatment. Described as “a mutant hybrid of Ronald McDonald and Coco Chanel,” he poked fun at the timeless Parisian brand in every way you could imagine, twisting around Chanel iconography, and taking their consumer culture cues of yesteryear (Lego clutches, make way for the McNugget bag!) to an entirely new level. Not only do we find his tongue-in-cheek play on fast fashion and high-street branding quite brilliant, but appreciate the nostalgic nod to the happy-go-lucky 90's. Quite simply put, we’re lovin’ it.
While Roberto Cavalli’s premiere show made a controversial splash with foreboding water and fiery flames, his new little sister line Just Cavalli takes us to a place that’s a bit personal and a little closer to home. Drawn from his native Florence, the focus of this collection was the “the inestimable value of the Florentine Renaissance’s artistic patrimony through the lens of Cavalli’s contemporary creative vision.”
True to his vision, every piece had collaged images of medici statuary and marble stripes reminiscent of the arches in Santa Maria Novella and all sorts of renaissance architecture. Flashes of neon bisecting photo prints in broad brushstrokes modernized the collection, while staying on trend with bulky tunics over skinny pants. Flits of fringe on fur totes add a touch of both flair and luxury.