Milan Spring 2013 Fashion Week

Milan Fashion Week was awash with major industry icons – Versace, Prada, Gucci, Fendi, MissoniDolce & Gabbana, and so on. Here are a few of my faves.


Designer Giorgio Armani dubbed his Emporio Armani collection “Neat,” and that it was aimed at offering women a way of “expressing yourself that is simple and natural, and never too affected.” This translated into crisp shorts suits, low-slung metallic minis, two-tone rompers, and drapey trousers in soothing shades, offset with sleek leather accessories.

Fratelli Rossetti put lace front and center in its Spring 2013 footwear collection, most notably in its iconic Brera tasseled leather moccasin, which nods to both traditional embroidery and au courant graphic geometrics.

Marni’s Consuelo Castiglioni offered a weightless exploration of volume and proportion with boxy bonded-leather tops and distorted print A-line skirts that riffed on the idea of sparseness as elegance. In keeping with her “form follows function” edict, dresses appeared to be folded, rather than cut, into shape, while pleats and peplums added a sensual touch to otherwise pared-down silhouettes. On the accessories front: boxy padlocked bags, metal wedge slingbacks, and architectural Lucite platforms.

Jil Sander is back at her namesake house after eight years away. She presented a serenely elegant collection of sleeveless coat dresses, cropped trousers, colorblock knits, softly sculpted day dresses, and a suite of iridescent rubberized polka dot pieces in the company’s stark white headquarters, sans the usual celebrity hubbub that surrounds so many Fashion Week shows.

At Salvatore Ferragamo, creative director Massimiliano Giornetti took his inspiration from the spirit of the gaucho vis-a-vis luxurious, leather-trimmed trench coats, peplumed riding jackets and paper-bag-waist miniskirts and trousers, all in monochromatic shades of oyster and black. The standout pieces here, though, had to be the snakeskin pants that laced all the way from hem to hip, and glossy crocodile over-the-knee peep-toe boots and multi-strap sandals.

And, finally, Giorgio Armani gave his audience a twofer in the form of a one-night-only mini-retrospective exhibit titled “Eccentrico,” where he showcased his more over-the-top designs in the space next to his runway show, “Kaleidoscope,” which featured his Spring 2013 ready-to-wear offerings. These included louche, shimmery pajama-like pants and tops under more structured (but still soft) coats and jackets. And as for the stunningly beautiful celestial print finale? Bravo, Mr. Armani!

Lauren David Peden writes for Rue La La as a Contributing Editor.


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