A Look Back at Milan Fashion Week

Although Paris Fashion Week’s Spring Ready-to-Wear 2020 was filled with beautiful designs, I wanted to take a look at the Italian designers in Milan who generally are known for more vibrant and eccentric designs. I’m happy to say that I was in no way disappointed. Below you’ll find, as always, a collection of my favorite shows and designs.

Moschino

Moschino has a history of cultural satire starting with Franco Moschino, its creator. Moschino created fashion shows such as Fun Fur in 1989. For that show, he stitched together teddy bears to make fur coats that mocked the fashion industry’s use of furs in designs. Whether literal or figurative, Moschino is a brand not afraid to reference popular culture. Jeremy Scott, the current creative director, has kept this up, and he was inspired by Picasso for this collection. All of the designs were hand-painted before being digitized into print, and they have apparent design correlations with Picasso. I truly love this collection’s creativity, originality, and Scott’s reference to Picasso’s mastery in a new and exciting way.

Above are two of Picasso’s paintings. The Harlequin is pictured on the left, and the Old Guitarist is pictured on the right. In the Middle is Bella Hadid wearing a fashion piece clearly inspired by these two paintings.

Versace

As someone who loves Versace, its creator, its history, and its legacy, I feel that nothing is more intrinsic to its story than a collection based on ’90s fashion. This show was a celebration of its roots and its explosive imprint on the fashion world at the start of the 21st century. In the year 2000, Jennifer Lopez wore a jungle-print dress that plunged past her navel on the Grammys red carpet. The general public was so in awe with the dress that they overwhelmed Google’s servers searching for it, which later inspired Google to create what is now known as Google Images. Vogue writer Nicole Phelps said, “You could argue it was the end of fashion as an insular industry and the start of fashion as entertainment.” Donatella Versace partnered with Google to introduce an updated version of the dress on the cusp of a new decade, 2020. It was refreshing to see a toned down Versace that only placed emphasis on its claim to the fashion world.

Donatella Versace & Jennifer Lopez tell the story of the Green Dress

Gucci

What is a Gucci collection without controversy? The fashion house has a long history of stirring up provocation. So, it’s only fitting that this collection opened with a statement. Designer Alessandro Michele, feeling alienated by the success of Gucci that he formulated, sent out 21 models dressed in straitjackets. A plight that all successful artists face is the trap of their own works’ cultural popularity, and Michele said, “I’m afraid of getting bored.” However, this opening was seen as offensive to some, like model Ayesha Tan-Jones, who wore “Mental health is not fashion” on her raised hands. Despite the controversy, this collection was filled with beautifully sewn vintage designs that referenced the ’70s, elements of BDSM, and utilized the popular current trend of color blocking.

Above are the straitjackets that were used in the opening of the show. On the right is model, Ayesha Tan-Jones, who protested the design.

FILA

The last brand that I imagined to see on the runway was FILA. I must say there is something exciting about seeing a brand that I can actually afford on the runway. Creative directors Antonino Ingrasciotta and Joseph Graesel, who joined FILA last year, did an amazing job with this maritime-inspired collection. I think that the pieces were beautiful, and they found a harmonious balance between representing the brand as is and elevating it to an acceptable standard for an event like Fashion Week.

Boss

Boss put on one of the cleanest, sharpest shows I have seen in a long while from a runway. I was impressed by the minimalist design and could easily see how this particular show was a love letter to New York City. Chief brand officer Ingo Wilts told Vogue, “The pattern that runs through the collection was inspired by an early morning walk I took through Hudson Yards early in the summer. The sun was just rising and the colors, especially the blues, were mirrored in all the buildings there.”

Missoni

As winter approaches, it’s always nice to find collections that show masterful layering. I really enjoyed the designer’s inspiration for the collection. She simply wanted to make a show based on the idea that a couple, at times, share pieces of their wardrobe. Although the idea is simple, it’s wholesome. I’m living for the vision Angela Missoni carried out.

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All images were sourced from Vogue Runway.