The new days of disco

MILAN – Climate Week had just kicked off in New York City when apparently half of the city’s fashion journalists, retailers and style pr...


MILAN – Climate Week had just kicked off in New York City when apparently half of the city’s fashion journalists, retailers and style professionals boarded a Delta flight to Milan – most for the first time since February 2020, just before the world came across a virus. provoked stop. Despite all the talk about sustainability in the industry, especially once the pandemic sparked calls for a reassessment of old practices, no one mentioned carbon credits. People were too busy to be excited and a little freaked out about traveling again.

“It’s annoying,” Jonathan Anderson said via Zoom earlier the same day. He wasn’t talking about stealing, but rather about “this idea that everything should go back to how it was before”. The two are not unrelated. He explained why he had decided not to put on a show for his brand JW Anderson, and also more broadly, what fashion represents: an attempt to distill the mood of the moment.

“How can we get out of this pandemic without changing?” Mr. Anderson said. “I didn’t want to rush.

Instead, he created a sort of “Black Mirror” version of the Pirelli calendar – you know, the one you hang on a real wall – photographed by and featuring a Juergen Teller in a bikini, as well as JWA’s collection of extreme ruffled knits, patent slip dresses with shoe buckle straps, and sheer lace shirts, all set in the middle of a tire factory.

Peekaboo is not what it used to be. There are a lot of things that really aren’t.

As the Milan shows kicked off, however, launching the first full season of in-person European ready-to-wear in a year and a half, you wouldn’t know.

It’s so much easier – so much more fun! so much less depressing! – to dive back into the deep end with clothes and peacock in the street; don’t struggle with the boring questions of what it means to sell things and embrace sustainability at the same time; to question the motivations and the will to change an entrenched system which is also for some extremely profitable. It’s more fun to eat pasta and bask in the sun, as Italy is mostly open to those who can show proof of vaccination, and Italians are really good at wearing masks and, at least at shows. , the chairs are installed in a socially distanced manner.

And honestly, watching Kim Jones’ first live show for Fendi was amusing. A quasi ode to the new days of disco, he made dance on the lip of a volcano – or a table, for that matter – sounds like a great idea. He made all of these predictions about the coming era echoing the 1920s era, which inspired the 60s and 70s, in looks. Or thugs, really.

On his HQ’s Fendi marathon track – the longest in Milan, according to the brand – Mr Jones had built towering metal arches, reflected in a mirrored wall to create an endless hallway of glamor. And to better reflect the elegant tuxedo cuts and kaftans with a swirl of black brushstrokes; pastel strapless sash dresses and cocktail dresses dripping with layers of silk fringes, even chubby sheepskin, much of the collection engraved with the Pop Art profiles of women drawn by illustrator Antonio Lopez between 1969 and 1972 (Mr. Lopez having been a favorite of former Fendi designer Karl Lagerfeld).

Faces turned into intarsia scribbles in leather thigh-high boots and leather mini thighs; in mink with just a few polka dots of red lips; in lamé and silk; in a perceptual game of hide and seek. It was the lightest show in terms of mood and material that Mr. Jones has done since joining the brand, and a shameless invitation to party.

Yay?

Admittedly, this is also where Fausto Puglisi seemed to be going with his first Roberto Cavalli collection: towards a big imaginary party in the wild kingdom, with leopard spots and tiger and zebra stripes. Often all in the same garment, a dress with spaghetti straps or a mini bodysuit or a pantsuit, whatever, right down to shoes with claw heels. The brand has a history of animal prints, so you can understand what Mr Puglisi was thinking. Although it is also difficult at this point to see so many animal tracks and not to think “Joe Exotic”. Which perhaps suggests that it was time to think twice.

At least when it comes to the natural world, Alberta Ferretti has stayed a bit more abstract, using butterflies as a metaphor and crochet and macrame as a medium in an easy play on tailor and chiffon.

It was Luke and Lucie Meier at Jil Sander, however, who fully engaged in the ambivalence between the gravitational pull backwards and the insignificant feeling that there is a need to rethink the way things are done. Or worn out.

(Max Mara summed this up as “existential luxury hotel” in their show notes, which on the runway meant athletic mesh and ’60s minis, dark denim printed with the brand’s name in embellished capital letters and lounge chair stripes, with all slung luggage straps.)

Not so much in Sander’s oversized suits – jackets cut to wrap, with some sort of exaggerated priestly bandana collar around the neck – or even the white shirts with their own built-in gathered corsetry hugging the hips. But in the combination of two organza shift dresses with puffed sleeves embroidered with fuzzy pastel cashmere and sparkles like a fairytale nightie and canvas painter’s pants. Already frayed hems.

“Tension is energy,” the Meiers wrote in their performance notes. Making it attractive rather than confusing is a skill. It’s one way to get off the ground.

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Newsrust - US Top News: The new days of disco
The new days of disco
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