Men’s fashion has slowly, but surely, taken itself out of the dark ages. Leaving the world of simple suits and trousers behind and pushing into newer, more fashionable territory. The days of simple hyper-masculine silhouettes seem to finally be a thing of the past, with modern Italian menswear moving towards a broader and more unisex look. This season, Milan’s menswear designers sprung into action and created collections that take conventional masculine silhouettes and inject an organic feminity to each garment. Leaving their designs looking undoubtedly masculine, yet satisfyingly feminine all at once.
Marni has taken a very drastic turn in terms of looks since founder Consuelo Castiglioni, stepped down as creative head last year. The new Marni, now headed by Francesco Risso, Marni has evolved into a fashion house focused on the grey areas of boundary-pushing design. Much of the house’s DNA is still very evident within Francesco’s designs, which is always a great thing to see, however, Marni’s codes now have a cacophonous freshness that’s relevant with today’s luxury fashion trends. For fall 2018, it looks as if Marni was about playing with chaos. Pattern, volume, silhouettes, colour, and texture all came crashing into one another to create a modern vagabond chic aesthetic. Some of the most whimsical and likeable pieces have to be the suiting and plaids which were decorated with splashes of cartoon illustrations of keys, foxes, and beakers. Giving the collection a wonderfully light-hearted look.
What can be said about Miuccia Prada that hasn’t already been said before? The woman is a genius of her craft. Often overshadowed by gimmicky designers and their smoke and mirrors, yet never shaken enough by their presence to change her designs. Miuccia has become the underlying foundation of industry hellbent to spitting out trend after trend. This season, Prada once again sends out a stunning collection rooted deeply in design and style, rather than quick trend. For her fall show, Miuccia took one of her brand’s most defining materials (nylon) and reinterpreted it into just about everything the models wore on the runway. One design aesthetic that stuck out during the show was how relatively tame it was in terms of patterns for a modern Prada show. Within the last few years, Miuccia has really spearheaded the pattern mix aesthetic that many designers are basing their entire brands on now. However, that didn’t mean the collection lacked any fun deconstructed patterns. If anything the placement of patterned and graphic ensembles at various intervals of the show, allowing it to stay fresh and electric. Yet even with fun beach-inspired patterns and prints, the real highlights of the show were the looks that combined 60s London mod silhouettes with the sportiness of today. A big part that was possible by the use of Prada’s signature nylon. Fusing today’s millennial obsession with athleisure and Prada’s razor-sharp high fashion go-to’s.
The Caten twins have a true talent in the field of reimagination. While other designers take design go-to’s and fail at reimagining the design trope in fresh and relevant ways, Dean and Dan Caten manage to inject new life into their influences. Take this season’s western theme for instance, while other designers would fail in making a collection that differences from the dozens of western inspired collections of fashion’s past. The twins at Dsqaured2 manage to create a fun a fresh take on western clothing. As usual, their always evident hint of rock and roll fuses perfectly with their reinvented idea of western glam. One stand out a little feast for the eyes was the small additions of feminine glam like a little peekaboo sequin sleeve, delicate floral trims, and silk ribbon bowties help navigate the collection from overtly masculine to modern androgyny.
When thinking of the all American ivy league fashionista, they of Ralph Lauren. Always cool, calm, and collected. Lauren collections always stay firmly rooted in old fashion Americana. Which isn’t a bad thing because it works! However, this season at Ralph Lauren Purple Label, a distinctly European flair was injected into the hardcore Americana tropes littered throughout the collection. There were navy and sailor ensembles that had European silhouettes, with their nipped in waists and widened shoulders. There were aviator ensembles that paired delicate velvets with the masculine idea of military dressing. But the true show stoppers were the elegant formalwear, which took plaids and monochrome black ensembles and infused them with a balance of modern touches and a distinctly European silhouette. Allowing for a fresh take on your tradtitional Ivy League boy.