Milan Fashion Week Dispatch #2 — Bottega, Dolce, Jil, and Ferragamo
Thomas Maier sent down the runway for Bottega Veneta (above) a collection devoted to clean, unfussy, easy-to-wear, graphic dresses. No attention was spared in the way of cut and pattern and no attention was paid to any sort of pant, as there were none, not a single trouser in sight. For the women who can’t be bothered, each and every one of his dresses lent it’s wearer a sense of power by dint of extreme craftsmanship (see: the charcoal flannel skirt with the trompe l’oeil-style beading) married with comfort and restraint. This collection proved that even the munificent styles of Italian designers are not resistant to the minimalist trend percolating through the fashion industry.
This season’s Jil Sander collection could have been last season’s, could have been a collection from 2000, maybe 2004. This collection preserved the continuity of the brand at the expense of personality and creativity. But who could blame the design team who’ve been left abruptly at the helm of the eponymous brand for the third time? They continued writing the story of clean architectural lines, muted colors and androgynous suits that the label has been writing for years, with the same happy but predicable ending (with the exception of one plot twist, the introduction of the python flatform– a charter a girl could really rally behind.)
Dolce & Gabbana gave us the key to a secret garden that was home to owls, foxes, frogs, fauna and fairies alike. The fairytale was rendered in comely naïve appliques on an array of dresses and coats. However, I found myself most enchanted by the pieces that seemed to live right outside of the fantastical gates, the pieces that bridged the world of the real and the sublime. A hunter green pantsuit, a black lace below-the-knee skirt and a tweed cape kept the collection grounded and wearable. And for that grand finale? An army of glittering fairies whose fairy-dust-infused garments we’re sure to be seeing at parties all over the world next season — but only if you clap your hands along with the equally stunning front row (I see you David Gandy and Monica Belluci.) Do you believe?
Comfort doesn’t mean casual, well at least at the Salvatore Ferragamo show yesterday. Pulling in the reigns on last year’s experiment with deconstruction, Massimiliano Giornetti dressed a modern woman with a taste for the classics. Updating plaid coats with leather trim and standup collars and giving little black dresses a gold leaf Midas touch, he gave his classically luxurious brand a modern edge. Comfort reigned king with a #trending robe coat and an array of ribbed knit dresses. Should, god forbid, the vortex return next fall, I know exactly who I’ll turn to for swaddling.