If you’re anything like me, you’ve spent the past few weeks celebrating one of the most exciting times of the year: Fashion Month. Four week-long events are held in the most fashion-forward cities – New York, London, Milan, and Paris – for fashion houses and designers to showcase their newest collections.
Milan Fashion Week is one of the most glamorous and prestigious fashion events held semi-annually in February and September. As someone who spent last semester abroad in Milan and went to a show, it does live up to the hype. The most recent Milan Fashion Week was held from February 21-27, 2023. Household name brands and up-and-coming designers showed their upcoming autumn/winter creations in hopes of leaving a positive impression on the fashion community. So without further ado, here is a recap of some of the most memorable shows during Milan Fashion Week.
If you’re looking to make a statement during fashion week, filling the set with over 200,000 condoms should do the trick. Diesel’s set design drew tons of attention, but the designs did not disappoint. The collection featured ultra-low-rise jeans, ripped silk dresses, denim garments, and sheer mesh panels to achieve a sleek vibe. Stars in attendance for the show included Mia Khalifa and Julia Fox, who wore low-rise denim all the way down to the shoes. And wait, was that Jennifer Coolidge sitting next to her White Lotus costar Haley Lu Richardson? No, just drag artist Alexis Stone playing a little dress-up for the event.
Artistic director Kim Jones chose Italian designer Delfina Delettrez as his muse for this season’s show. As a member of the Fendi family, Delettrez channels the brand’s heritage while adding her distinct, chic twist. The Fendi fall 2023 collection was ladylike yet rebellious, a duality that designer Silvia Venturini Fendi recognizes in the brand’s DNA. The collection presented looks of couture sequins, sculptural leather, and ribbed knitwear. Texture play and layering were essential in the collection, which left a positive remark on audience members, including Mia Regan and Winnie Harlow.
Arguably the most iconic fashion house in Milan, Prada turned heads by showing a contemporary take on uniforms to push the theme that glamor is everywhere. The color scheme was primarily neutral, and the collection’s cool, minimalistic vibe influenced the rise of gray street style being worn across the city. Top models Gigi Hadid and Kendall Jenner walked the show: Hadid wore a gray and black neutral look with 3D texturing on the skirt, and Jenner a long camel-colored coat.
Moschino’s signature over-the-top, campy designs indeed showed through in their newest collection inspired by punk spirit. Models walked down the runway in leather corset dresses, embellished jackets, bejeweled fishnets, and dripping gold detailing. Spiked mohawks topped off each look to literally embody punk rock edge.
Tod’s took a far more sophisticated route with their latest collection filled with trench coats, bombers, and parkas in shearling, wool, leather, and other luxe fabrics. The looks epitomized a fall/winter collection with clean tailoring and a neutral color palette, but micro mini skirts and slicked-back hair styling added just the right amount of flair. Refined but never dull, Tod’s successfully fuses trendy and timeless with this collection.
Gucci made headlines in November when creative director Alessandro Michele announced his departure from the fashion house. Though Sabato de Sarno has already been selected as Michele’s successor, de Sarno will begin creative control for the next Gucci show in September. Despite this transition, Gucci’s in-house design team managed to put on a great show. Like Prada, Gucci took inspiration from workwear. The show was set in a surrealist corporate venue with a bright yellow-green carpeted runway. Models emerged from elevators wearing oversized office chic looks with hints of 70s-inspired maximalism. Each look differed from the next, and Gucci’s design team proved that the house is much more than its director.
Hailing from Milan, Sunnei was founded in 2014 and is known for its innovative approach to design and presentation. Their most recent show was certainly no exception. The sounds of rock and roll hits filled the room as models headed down the runway before jumping off the stage and crowd-surfing over the audience members standing on foot. That’s right, crowd-surfing. Looks from the collection with vibrant tones and bold patterns could be seen on the runway and in the air. But that’s not all; the models were Sunnei’s design team members. The show’s theme was about taking inspiration from daily life and the people it is spent with, so who better to model the looks than Sunnei’s team?
Ferragamo appointed Maximilian Davis as their new creative director in March 2022 in the hope of rejuvenating the Italian heritage brand. This season, Davis experiments with a striking color palette as navy, white, gray, black, and lots of red looks head down the runway. The collection nods to Hollywood glam with a futuristic twist and sophisticated silhouettes. Davis has left his audience on the edge of their seats, waiting to see which direction the new creative director takes Ferragamo next.
Dolce & Gabbana
As a fashion house synonymous with Sicilian heritage and overtly feminine designs, Dolce & Gabbana stays true to its brand identity in its newest collection titled “Sensuale.” The designs celebrate the sensuality and elegance of the woman through lingerie-inspired looks. The iconic red, black, and white color palette returns to the runway and the designs play around with mesh and lace materials. Ashley Graham walked the show in a red bodycon dress, and of course, the brand’s newest creative partner, Kim Kardashian, was seated in the front row.
This season, Filippo Grazioli incorporates Missoni’s signature bold and intricate knitwear into fall/winter fashion. The collection featured bold geometric patterned knitwear, slip dresses, palazzo pants, and fun eyewear pieces. In addition, Grazioli experimented with layering and added a touch of bohemian flair to create eye-catching looks.
For his third show as creative director at Bottega Veneta, Matthieu Blazy continues the ‘parade in Italy’ theme by staging a procession of models down the runway. Bottega has developed a cult following for its iconic bags showcased on the runway. Blazy presents innovative silhouettes, and crafts looks from unique materials like paper-thin leather and sculptural knitwear for another successful collection.
So with that, here is a wrap on the highlights from Milan Fashion Week. If you couldn’t make it to the front row of the shows, hopefully, this recap serves as a close alternative. Now the countdown begins for September MFW…
Featured image via Wallpaper* Magazine.