In just a few seasons, Nicola Brognano (with Lotta Volkova’s styling help) has flipped and twisted one of the sleepiest brands in Milan and transformed it into a 2000s-era e-girl nostalgia heaven. Blumarine last had such success in the end of the 90s and the beginning of the millenium, when nothing seemed better than rhinestone butterflies, sexy ruffles and lots, lots of denim. It’s 2021, and ironically, that’s what the TikTok generation loves and needs in their lives. Yet when asked backstage about his inspiration for spring, Brognano said “no one in particular really“. He knows that what matters is inundating social media accounts with the brassy swagger of all the skimpy, hotter-than-hot pants trotting on stilettos on the catwalk today, as well as the risqué fringed and beaded bikinis barely covered by a cropped cardi trimmed in regenerated mink or crocheted in fluoro recycled poly, or the see-through chiffon cargo pants with midriff-baring matching tops in eye-popping Day Glo colors. The co-conspirator in Brognano’s implacable turnaround is Volkova, who was busy backstage before the show shepherding models into a not-too-orderly lineup. Dressed in a whisper of a dress in pale pink stretchy gauze and chaperoned by her gallant, elegantly groomed black poodle Dimitri, Lotta fired off a barrage of her own takes on Blumarine’s new fundamentals: “Military Fairies. Sexy Butterfly girls. Frivolous and fun early Y2K mood when social media wasn’t on the horizon. Denim patchwork queens. Trippy, psychedelic, neon girls. Red carpet denim prints, red carpet bandanas. Low-waisted mermaids.” Love it or hate it, but that kind of Blumarine seems to be timeless.
Collage by Edward Kanarecki.