Ciao amichi! It's the first round of Milan shows! Some of my all time favorite fashion houses (I'm looking at you Gucci) show in Milan, and the shows this season were nothing short of spectacular. Though I have to say, I think for this round of shows, Alberta Ferretti and Max Mara may actually be tied for my favorite. Read all about them below and lookout for Part 2 coming at ya soon!
For all Fall 2017 Fashion Week coverage click HERE
Gucci was founded by Guccio Gucci in Florence in 1921, making classic and refined leather goods. Under the direction of his three sons, Gucci opened several stores in Italy and began making apparel, accessories, shoes, and handbags. As of 2015, designer Alessandro Michele took over as Creative Director, and has made Gucci an enormously popular brand after several difficult years.
Alessandro Michele always brings his insane but delightful mix of pattern, color, and over-the-top embellishment to his collection. This season, Gucci's first combined female/male collection, brought a tribe of androgynous, geeky, aristocratic, and rebellious looks that took over Milan. Michele expressed his concern that fashion is moving too fast, and he hates having to tell a new story every season without time to reflect. This show felt like all of Michele's ideas exploding into one mass of chaos, but it was a beautiful chaos, and one that I hope we see more of. As artist Coco Captain scrawled across thier invitation, "What will we do with all this future,’’?
Italian designer Alberta Ferretti is known for her romantic, and feminine designs. In her own words, she comments, “I can’t see why women cannot look delicate and act tough”. After spending her childhood in her family's dressmaking shop, she launched her own line and founded a production and distribution group named Aeffe which inspired the Made in Italy movement.
For Fall 2017, Ferretti is taking us on a trip to Venice. Floaty Grand Canal–print dresses, gondolier stripes on everything you can imagine, rich velvets in a myriad of colors , and hooded capes and masks per Carnevale. Though some of the collections details were quite similar to those of Gucci, Ferretti has a way of knowing just what women want, and giving it to them without bells and whistles.
Italian designer Alessandro Dell’Acqua, whose lucky number and birthdate inspired the name of his label, is best known for borrowed-from-the-boys tailoring with a sophisticated and still feminine mood, as well as intricate and unexpected detailing in embroidery, embellishment, and pattern.
Dell'Acqua married American Varsity with a 50's Italian Catholic look, and the outcome was bellissimo. Inspired by Anna Magnani in the 1955 adaptation of Tennessee Williams’s The Rose Tattoo, Dell'Acqua sent down fur-sleeved varsity jackets, herringbone tweeds, and a color palette that married american preppy navy, ivory, and beige, with luxurious makeup-colors in the peaches, pinks, and reds family that have been a huge trend these past two seasons.
In 1951, Achille Maramotti opened his menswear business under the label of Max Mara. His goal was to make haute-couture clothing inspired by French styles in a manufacturing setting, which was quite an avant-garde idea for the time. His designs made him wildly popular in Italy, and is still today one of Italy's largest fashion houses. Though Achille passed in 2005, his son, Luigi, is currently chairman of the company.
Monochrome was the name of Max Mara's game for Fall '17. The looks made a bold impact, and the color choices were perfetto. Bold red, rich apricot, and opulent tones of grey, both very light and very dark, that has me rummaging through my closet trying to copy.
Fendi was founded in 1925 in Rome, by Adele and Edoardo Fendi. It is renowned for its fur and fur accessories, as well as several signature handbags. Today, Fendi is headed by the founders five daughters, as well as Karl Lagerfeld.
Fendi's Fall collection was significantly paired back and refined. Elegant furs and tweed coats and skirts walked the runway with sleek Lady bags and classic feminine silhouettes. There were very tiny intricate details such as the vine-print inspired by antique endpapers printed onto dresses and intarsia-ed into fur, as well as the signature letter-sealing-wax red boot.
Prada was founded in 1913 by Mario Prada and his brother Martino as a leather goods shop, but it was Mario's granddaughter, Miuccia, who made the label a commercial success when she took over in 1978. By the 1990's, the name Prada was a status symbol around the world, and today produces men's and women's apparel, handbags, shoes, accessories, sunglasses, among other product categories.
Miuccia Prada's Fall collection was drenched in a multitude of colors, exploding with ostrich feathers, and dripping in crystal beading. We started somewhere in the hippie age of the 60's and 70's, and moved later into 50's era sex-bomb glamour printed literally on to skirts and tops. Personally, I loved her use of color and mixing bold shades, as well as the embroidery patterns across coats, skirts, and even bralettes.