Prada lets it rip with “false moves” at Milan Fashion Week

Prada lets it rip with “false moves” at Milan Fashion Week

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At first, the pleats on the Prada blazer looked like an oversight. Perhaps the model had grown tired of waiting for her turn on the catwalk, sat down on the floor and accidentally crumpled her outfit. A big blast at Milan Fashion Week, where flawless perfection is the aesthetic baseline, but these things happen.

But then there was a pencil skirt that had a front slit torn into the fabric. And several folds – which on closer inspection turned out to be sewn and ironed in place. “Gestures of error”, as Miuccia Prada’s co-designer Raf Simons put it.

Twists, tears and folds suggesting “pieces that have had a life” were repeated in the set design of the show, an immersive temporary art installation by film director Nicolas Winding Refn in which holes punched into black cardboard walls framed grainy, abstract film excerpts of household: a flickering light bulb , a sleepy walk up a flight of stairs.

Deliberate mistakes, a triangulated creative collaboration between two fashion designers and a film director, and fragments of film glimpsed in the background of a catwalk provide a mind-boggling setup for a 15-minute fashion show. And this, of course, is exactly the point. Prada is high-fashion for the kind of people who appreciate arthouse cinema and modern art installations. Intellectual complexity is as key to Prada as the famous triangle logo.

Models present the Prada Spring/Summer 2023 collection at Milan Fashion Week.

Models present the Prada Spring/Summer 2023 collection at Milan Fashion Week. Photo: Alessandro Garofalo/Reuters

The clothes themselves were simple. The Prada catwalk is always peppered with ideas borrowed for nothing by an audience much wider than the few who can afford to shop in the stores. Here, broad-shouldered blazers meant the gray of wet slate worn with narrow trousers, for daytime.

For evening, jewel-toned silk shell tops were tucked neatly into elongated pencil skirts. Last season’s white racer-back vests – a popular high-street trend that began on the Prada catwalk – were replaced by the fierce solitude of white shirts buttoned to the neck.

Max Mara is a simpler proposition, for women who want well-made flattering clothes updated with a light side order of feminism. The wardrobe of the French Riviera of the 1930s – elegant wide-legged trousers with racer-back waistcoats, straw baskets and large sun hats – is a classic summer vibe that Ian Griffiths, the British designer of this Italian label, put in thought by giving top. billing to Renee Perle, whose kohl-lined eyes and finger-waved hair are familiar from portraits taken by her boyfriend, photographer Jacques-Henri Lartigue. “Perle is remembered only as a muse, and Lartigue as the artist,” Griffiths said after the show. “But it’s her style, her presence, that really makes these images. The idea of ​​a ‘muse’ is a way of dismissing the contribution of creative women.”

Griffiths learned about 1930s silhouettes from the very best: his fashion tutor at Manchester Polytechnic was the legendary designer Ossie Clark, who made the decade’s slim, slanted dresses fashionable again in the late 1960s. “The style of the 1930s is very feminine, but also very modern,” Griffiths said.

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