Another speculator week of gorgeous models floating down catwalks is over as Milan Fashion Week closes and Paris Fashion Week (Sept 24 to Oct 2) begins. With tough competition in recent years from London and Paris fashion weeks, Milan had a lot to prove, and that it did in abundance with shows that got the glitterati talking from the Sicilian temples and ancient gold coins at Dolce&Gabbana to the sculpture-inspired tailoring at Salvatore Ferragamo.
The crème of the fashion crop arrived fresh off the plane from London, and looked on as Milan opened its catwalk extravaganza with uncharacteristically young energy. From mesh, chains, colour, rich textures and tight-fitting mini-dresses, the message was clear: Italy’s not afraid to push the boundaries. Here are EW’s highlights from Milan Fashion Week:
Ferragamo’s designer, Massimiliano Giornetti, arrived in Milan with a collection inspired by Mexican architect Miguel Angel Aragones. Attention to detail and construction were evident in the sharp tailoring. However, the designer also added a relaxed fit to the outfits, making the collection wearable. Think cropped bombers, double-breasted jackets and knee-high boots with open toes. The colour palette was muted, with accents of beige and cream. Pinstripes and snakeskin injected some sass into the collection.
Ever the purveyor of luxe, Fendi surprised us with a playful edge for S/S14. With modern technology in mind, many garments played tribute to digital mania, hinting at circuit boards and web browsers. Even the colours had a renewed sense of style – burnt oranges, pink organza and electric blue stole the show. No longer are black and brown the colours of choice for autumn and winter. While the clothes wowed, the wigs adorned by the models also received major attention. Any designer with the nerve to book Cara Delevingne and Georgia May Jagger and disguise them with a low-fringed black wigs is clearly in a mischievous mood.
Delicate fishnet bras, bold colour and the odd dash of shimmer for good measure, Gucci was every bit as glamorous as you’d expect. Modesty, however, went out of the window, with low cut necklines, loose shapes and gauze netting showcasing a more feisty side to the label. There was a clear sports-luxe element to the collection, which showcased laidback chic and high-fashion working in unison effortlessly.
While bold patterns and rich textures are synonymous with Missoni, the brand managed to shake up its usual offerings with jet setting inspiration. From Aztec to Japanese and Mediterranean, Angela Missoni took the classic Missoni stripe and gave it a S/S14 overhaul. With an onus on new season colours such as orange and blue, the brand also used monochrome to break up the bright hues. Clashing prints were in, as were contrasting textures such as leather and silk.
Like Grecian goddesses, models in the Dolce&Gabbana show emerged adorned with gold coins and ornate headpieces. The creative design-duo spared no detail in their latest collection – even the PVC-looking fabric was actually made from lacquered silk to make it more comfortable to wear, and, of course, add a more luxurious feel. With shoes shaped like temple columns and decorated with ancient ruin prints, the catwalk show transpired like a journey through ancient Sicily.
Coming over all rock ‘n’ roll, Versace let loose with chains and cutouts. Never one to shy away from heavy metal influence, the label’s S/S14 collection amped up the ‘vunk’ (Versace’s take on punk) with models emerging from a giant silver medusa head. Creative director Donatella Versace claims she’s “elevating street items for the luxury world”, and judging by the medley of fabrics and styles on display in Milan, we think she’s done a fantastic job.