Designers brought sexy back in Milan as models marched down the runway in skin-baring looks and a renewed sense of confidence. Appealing to the next generation of consumers was a primary focus, and designers like Versace, Fendi, and Burberry delivered with 90s-inspired collections, history-making collaborations, and “it girl” energy.
“Now it feels like women are being sexy again, sex is an expression – a language that is very strong,” said Ricardo Tisci of his Spring 2022 collection for Burberry. In Milan, designers embraced a “sex-sells” theme. Burberry brought cut outs to the forefront, while Missoni showed midriff-baring patchwork jumpers and scanty one-piece swimsuits. In an effort to attract Gen Z, Dolce & Gabbana presented a collection that referenced the late 90s and early 2000s with lace-up details, exposed lingerie, and logo underwear. Inspired by the same period, Philosophy di Lorenzo Serafini celebrated skin-baring styles.
Innovative construction techniques and custom-made prints brought futuristic craftsmanship to the runway. At Tod’s, Walter Chiapponi introduced “technical decorativism,” working knitwear into a diamond pattern and adding sharp pleats to simple A-line dresses. Historically known for firm silhouettes, designers at Sunnei introduced flourishes of beading and fringe that complemented delicate watercolor-like prints and abstract floral motifs. Colville also embraced the art of printmaking, tapping artist Blue Farrier to paint bold prints for their collection.
Island of Love
Graphic florals, flowy dresses, and summer accessories highlighted an escapist, vacation-inspired aesthetic
in Milan. After recently opening a shop in the famous piazza of Capri, Luisa Beccaria’s collection’s video was a love letter to the so-called Island of Love, which was shot in some of the island’s less traveled locations. Massimo Giorgetti replicated his alfresco summer picnics for MSGM’s spring show, offering simplified shapes in a variety of lively prints—magnified ginghams, fruits, and small bouquets of wildflowers.
The shorter the better in Milan, where designers sent micro mini skirts down the runway in varying colors, styles, and fabrications. Popular at Blumarine and Alberta Ferretti, mini skirt sets are on the rise–searches are +50% to last year. Low rise mini skirts, a Y2K-inspired favorite among young consumers, are up in searches +554% to last year, appearing on the runway at Missoni and Fendace.
Tactile fabrics added a futuristic feel to several styles this season. Notably, popcorn fabric was seen at both Sunnei and Marine Serre. Max Mara and Etro introduced crochet to their collections, finding new ways to update the cottagecore aesthetic. Macrame bags at Missoni and Fabiana Filippi also added a textural, DIY touch to models’ ensembles.
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