Muscularity. This is what makes Milan different from the other seasonal style stops. Where London is strictly business with a dose of anarchic spray paint; where New York cruises under the awnings of its own uptown lifestyle; where Paris simply rules the roost, Milan – wrongly positioned outside the medal table – is actually a credible, incredible one stop shop, if heavy doses of Italian styling are your thing.
AW 2020 in Milan was a great week. It needed to be after the polemics and politics that threatened to spoil everyone’s fun in September. Here are some highlights from this season’s run of shows. Starting with the biggest, most vibrant show in town.
Moschino was all about fun – raucous colour, wide hips (ala pre-revolutionary Paris), anime-inspired imprints and cosplay-esque street smarts. Jeremy Scott was keen to let the clothes do the talking. Not a language everyone speaks, but clear enough to grab the attention of hardened fashion cynics. Like, where HAD the fun gone? OK, so the wide dresses may not fit in the taxi, but dressed like that, you’ll probably want to walk anyway.
A show that was ALL about the show, but that (literally) placed the clothes centre circle. Procedings kicked off to the sight of a swinging metronome and the strains of Ravel’s Bolero. To grasp the fascist implications of Gucci’s heritage goes a long way to getting the ‘weight’ of the look, and the anomalies Alessandro Michele crafts – pieces that go against the grain, and that had heavy religious implications. The revolving presentation alluded to the circus, a childlike fun house to which we’re all invited, and therefore implicit.
Mixing maximist values with some new era trends (Kendall in a rugby sweater anyone?) Donatella Versace is willing to ring certain changes (men and women sharing the runway for the first time) while adhering to a policy that only the very beautiful will do, and that they should be dressed (sportily or formally) to run things. A severity of mainstream style that you won’t find West of the Alps. That’s what makes Versace uniquely Milanese.