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Milan Fashion Week AW 18/19 Highlights

Tommy Hilfiger #TommyNow

The #TommyNow fashion experience roared into town, with the greatest hits of their Spring 2018 collection. It’s cool, confident and every look is instantly shoppable. They paid tribute to Tommy’s longtime love of racing, fusing their American heritage with modern athleticism, for him and her. There are unique plays on proportion and shape; unexpected twists on their icons; and graphic interpretations of speed stripes, checkerboard and archival logos.

Their pioneering spirit is ignited by their partnership with Formula One World Champions Mercedes-AMG Petronas Motorsport, pushing the boundaries of immersive experiences while remaining accessible to all with the #TommyNow SNAP app. Let’s go.

AIGNER #WUNDERKAMMER

Curiosities, antique relics, private treasures, mystical objects-  this melting pot of ideas that inspired Creative Director, Christian Alexander Beck, in the new AIGNER AW 18/19 collection. The cabinet of wonders of the late renaissance and baroque, was the ancestor to modern-day museums: extraordinary objects with different backgrounds and purposes were presented together. This resulted in exciting contrasts between the familiar and unknown, real and surreal, opulence and minimalism. The prints and embroidery were from distant lands, and ocelot patterns meet clean shapes and surfaces, however, the materials are juxtaposed with intricate details.

A combination of 20‘s dressing gowns played inspiration along with, kimono sleeves and some 90‘s sweater-vibes with embroidery, prints and lurex fringes that gave the collection a rich, opulent touch that skilfully reflects the ‘Wunderkammer’ theme.

Blumarine

For more than 40 years, Blumarine’s motif has been the rose, and their AW 18/19 collection showcase was no exception. Roses- whether yellow, pink, or blue, were trellised in print, across pretty silk dresses, as well as on mid-length shearling jackets, on gauzily sheer trousers and jumpsuits.

The rose is the most fundamental floral emblem in the romantic dialect: the flower of Valentine’s Day. Sappho, Burns, Blake, Shakespeare, and several anthologies’ worth of other love-minded poets have used the rose as a vehicle for written seduction. Blumarine, you’d thought picked roses with predictable intent, for their never-ending style story of femininity and romanticism.

Roberto Cavalli Women’s & Men’s AW 18/19: Power and Glamour

A modern type of sexiness, a fresh perspective on glamour. The Fall/Winter 2018 Roberto Cavalli collection, designed by creative director Paul Surridge, proposes a new interpretation of these themes, a new idea of luxury for now. A contemporaneous breed of sexuality revolves around confidence; confidence is born from comfort. This Roberto Cavalli wardrobe is energetic, forceful, powerful and assertive, without surrendering its reality.

A celebration of the timeless codes of Roberto Cavalli, re-energised and reinterpreted for today. Silhouettes are emphatic. Shoulders are curvilinear, and tailoring is sliced to reveal flashes of the body, coats cut open high onto the thigh and trousers cut slim to the leg and slit at the ankle, a game of concealing and revealing. Stretch wools, silks and knit streamline silhouettes, contrasting with billowing chiffons, flirtatious drapes and transparent bouclé. In tribute to Roberto Cavalli, a selection of iconic evening wear pieces are revived from the archive, and re-proposed for today.

Etro Women’s AW 18/19 Collection: Folk Deco

For Autumn 2018 Etro takes a journey to the land of the endless horizon. For the collection, Veronica Etro, found inspiration in the long shadows and dusty colour-scapes of wide western landscapes, wrapped up in the graphic sensibilities of European decorative arts. Bold patterns are inspired by the intricate art deco tapestries, the enamelled jewellery boxes and the colour blocking of Italian postmodern architecture. This collection exists in a cosmic prairie dream-world unlocked only by Etro’s bohemian wonder.

This collection relies largely on print for visual complexity. The patterns on each garment were mapped with mathematical precision and 3D modelled by hand to achieve the exact placement of every geometric ruffle, graphic border and billowing printed scarf. Weightless silk georgette and crêpe are elevated to the architectural via the intensely complicated processes used to create these fluttering, ethereal gowns. Printed chenille is used on fringed cardigans and wraparound dresses. Knitwear is the highlight of the season with masterfully crafted coats, capes, dresses and ponchos. The weight of suede and faux fur coats is broken up with panels of intarsia knit patterned wool. Chunky knits are flipped inside out on cropped jumpers to expose intricate stitching; jacquard stripes on fluid blanket coats are trimmed with suede fringe.

 

Salvatore Ferragamo

Ferragamo AW 18/19 collection marks a new chapter for the historic fashion house. Paul Andrew presents his inaugural collection as Women’s Creative Director, joining Guillaume Meilland as Design Director for Men’s.

This collection finds motivation in the frayed edges of modern decadence: a party once thought endless in the twilight hours jolting to reality at the first light of dawn. A new construct of dressing emerges: familiar forms are stripped back, loosened and elongated with ease and elevated functionality. Traditional silhouettes are expertly dissolved for a contemporary take on formal codes. materials are unrivalled: from plush leathers to Italian wool fabrics, to heavy silk twill and soft cottons. Broad strokes of colour were the starting point; merlot reds and mustard yellows mix expertly with parakeet green and deep Vatican blue between hints of nude and blush. Footwear, the keystone of Ferragamo’s storied history, is the seed of a collection that was purposefully visualized from the ground up. The Women’s collection channels the refined ease of Ferragamo’s legacy lit up with vigorous freshness.

Gucci ‘Cyborg’

Gucci’s AW 18/19 collection, entitled ‘Cyborg’ uses the concept of identity as a device of bio-political control. The subjectivities embodying Gucci’s pulverise move in this field, which is ethic and political at the same time. They represent the invitation to diverge, not conforming to univocal and other-directed identity models, and the encouragement to spread other ways of thinking about ourselves that are able to violate categorizations.   In this regard, what can seem atypical, anomalous, flawed to a normalizing eye, acquires a new legitimacy. A new breath. The courageous affirmation of the self and its singularity.

The collection goes further beyond, taking the shape of a genuine Cyborg Manifesto (D. J. Haraway), in which the hybrid is metaphorically praised as a figure that can overcome the dualism and the dichotomy of identity. The Cyborg, in fact, is a paradoxical creature keeping together nature and culture, masculine and feminine, normal and alien. Hybrid and shifting identities, built on multiple belongings, that transgress the normative discipline.

Prada

Prada’s AW 18/19 collection, was of utilitarian style-  layers of workwear and tulle, assembled entirely from man-made materials, starting with the company’s black Pocono-nylon padded rainwear. Synonymous with Prada, is nylon, it’s one of their iconic signatures.

Glowing fluorescents, and digital prints, were contrasted with tweeds, squared-off parkas, and construction worker style vests. Strapless cocktail dresses had corporate ID cards pinned to the breast, bringing an edgy touch to a classic look, rubber boots featured nylon drawstring leg-coverings. The classic use of their signature, mixed with fluorescents, and work-wear utilitarian elements gave a fresh feel to the long-standing fashion house.

Tod’s AW 18/19

Tod’s AW 18/19 collection showcase of puppies served to emphasize Tod’s specialty, which is, of course, accessories. Nearly every model carried a bag, whether it was a large, sturdy tote or a small box clutch strapped to the hand. The footwear ran from crepe-soled wedge boots to lace-up combats; however, the limelight was stolen by the puppy love and #italianattitude.

Accessorizing the accessories, was a whole lot of leather, suede, and shearling. The design team made a strong case for Tod’s outerwear with trenches, parkas, shearling blousons, and trendy puffers. Expanding on the sporty attitude of last season, they did a number of anorak-style jackets, the boldest in a patchworked shearling, combining the spice hues that were the collection’s dominant colour story. Stylish practicality was emphasized, which makes sense for a company that made its name with driving shoes.

Versace AW 18/19

Glamour is back! Versace’s AW 18/19 collection revived the ’80s with jazzy colours and iconic prints.  Following on from the Gianni Versace Tribute, last season, Donatella wisely took the impetus and carried on in her own direction.

The collection included a play on classics- a slick trench-coat, a schoolgirl shirt collar, beige tailoring, super-platformed brogues. Then there was a riff on trad-punk tartans with multilevel kilts topped off with the odd beret. Silhouette-wise, what evolved were draped tulip-shaped miniskirts and bubbles, waists cinched in with broad leather Versace-logo buckle belts, and wide shoulders.

The Versace archive is a fathomless source of brash, busy, primary-colour, pop-prints, which young designers revere. The trick here was that Donatella took that encouragement to go all-out with total looks- head scarf to body-con drapery to leggings to print-covered boots. That’s where it got interesting, because while the Versace sexiness is so much a house ‘classic,’ it was the head coverings which refreshed and reinforced the frisson of glamour.

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