While Marni‘s Francesco Risso discussed the Dada movement, primitivism and the need for deconstruction in our lives during his pre-fall 2018 presentation for the brand, one thing appeared to be instantly distinct while browsing the new season clothes – the approach that’s far from fashion’s typical ‘bourgeois conventions’. For him, Marni is playful. Francesco’s fascination with children’s intuitive way of learning translates in every single look, and that’s clear if you take a glance at his previous collections as well. From the bear toy necklaces and doll dresses with unfinished trailing threads to hilariously big hats and exaggerated buttons, Risso makes style a playground. But don’t think Marni is overly infantile. No. I perceive it as optimistic, joyously tongue-in-cheek in a way. Even the brand’s new Big Foot sneakers have that sense of humour about them. “Like a kid wearing his dad’s shoes”, the designer noted.
Angela Missoni can make her Missoni collection as sweet as the Spicchi de Arance e Pompelmo from the newly published The Missoni Family Cookbook. By that, I mean the softness of knits and a spectrum of pastel colours that appeared in the line-up. Missoni is more than fashion; it’s a lifestyle that’s about love, family, friendship, celebration – all somewhere situated in a very Italian villa. Light, plissé dresses in knitted Lurex and palazzo pants (note that delicate transparency) suggested fresh airiness, while the abstract floral prints and sea-shell jewellery brought on even more charm. Yet still, the collection feels dynamic, with that leading, signature “Put Together Look”, where different patterns, colours and textures are gracefully matched up. Plus, Bibi Cornejo Borthwick’s photography and Vanessa Reid’s styling fit contemporary Missoni’s image very, very well.
Franceso Risso embraces individuality like no other at Marni. Here, at the the most conceptual, Milan-based brand next to Prada, he distorts volumes, combines the most unlikely (peacock feathers as earrings! felted coats made from compressed, recycled textiles!) and has… fun. I bet a word like ‘trend’ doesn’t exist for that immensely talented guy, who can do lady-like cat prints and equally chic plastic wind coats in one collection. I loved everything about this collection, from the heavy dose of bold colours and stylishly cumbersome totes to the bubble-like pumps and 30s-isnpired dresses made, or rather classed, from contrasting materials. Undoubtedly, it’s Milan fashion week’s dessert.
Actually, when was the last time you’ve heard from Salvatore Ferragamo? To me, as to most of the editors, insiders and potential customers, the Italian brand seemed to have lost its identity long, long time ago. What does Ferragamo stand for? Does it even matter today?
Fortunately, the brand didn’t end as another ‘Made in Italy’ label with airport stores, even though the verge was very near. Paul Andrew, whom you might know for his namesake footwear brand, and Guillaume Meilland (Ferragamo’s menswear designer) joined forces to create an impressively consistent, chic and, most importantly, covetable collection of autumn-winter essentials. Leather and silk foulards are Ferragamo’s biggest codes, that’s why the collection was filled with incredible suede coats, ostrich leather boots and dresses covered in archival prints. The tailoring, for both men and women, was powerful as well. Katharine Hepburn, a Ferragamo fan of the past, and her style influence were obvious – a crisp shirt, a blazer, a perfect pair of pants. It’s important that the designers develop the new Ferragamo by embracing the brand’s heritage. Even though some pieces, like the big poncho or belted maxi-dresses, felt very Phoebe Philo, that isn’t the collection’s drawback. Quite opposite – those who will not find themselves comfortable in the Hedi Slimane-era Céline should switch for Ferragamo (which you might have never expected!). Bravo!