Milan: Day 1

We forgot who said this, but someone somewhere seriously (seriously!) proclaimed Milan the world’s fashion capital. Well, we all
know the truth, that Milan is gray and dull. And that the word “fashion” here is inexorably tied with “industry.” Milan is no more than a shopping mall with an attitude.

One of the city’s few jewels, Prada proposed another edgy vision for spring, based on the twisted splendor of modernity mixed with antiquity. The scenography was amazing, with projections that moved across a large backdrop, while the collection evoked everything from an uptown sci-fi girl in gray to a post-baroque it-girl wearing a crystal chandelier for an evening dress. And all the girls looked like a young Brigitte Bardot.

At Gianfranco Ferré, the Aquilano-Raimondi pair is far more serious. They have totally forgotten the Ferré überwoman, with her square shoulder pads, and replaced her with another kind of amazon. Pleats and draping were the keywords, but honestly we couldn’t think of anything but pastries—meringue, millefeuille, chantilly. Which is to say, very sweet, but a little heavy.

Versace for spring amounted to a bit of Paco Rabanne 1965, a speck of Loris Azzaro 1975 and a trace of Thierry Mugler 1985. In short, and perhaps surprisingly, it was very good, with its rich prints, playful colors and a renewed style for the label’s, how shall we say, less-than-monastic clientele.

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