MILAN (AP) – On Monday’s fourth and final day of Milan Fashion Week’s menswear previews for next spring and summer, designers seemed to have got the job done.
The looks seemed more weather-appropriate than over the weekend, as warm temperatures reminded her that dressing in hot weather can mean covered, but in a relaxed way that accommodates elegance and fun.
Highlights from Monday’s shows:
GIORGIO ARMANI DEFENSE ELEGANCE
Against the onslaught of streetwear and fashion, Giorgio Armani defends elegance in all seasons.
The 87-year-old’s Spring-Summer 2023 collection mixes classics with more unusual iterations, as the fashion world demands. Offering elegance is increasingly a lonely job.
“I don’t know when we will feel the loss of the man who moves through life with such refinement,” said the stylist after the show.
For his main line, Armani focused on casual, relaxed suits, for day or night. There was movement in the loose pants and coats, but also in the repeated graphic prints that create the effect of waves. Print on print looks are insistently modern.
“It’s true that it’s nice to see a well-dressed man in a suit. But it’s also nice to see the evolution of fashion. Bring the basics, I’ve always done this in my life. It is also true that (the market) demands novelty,” said Armani.
On that front, Armani created tunic-length tops. Jackets and shirts have a shine rarely seen in menswear. A tightly tied foulard replaces a shirt under an open jacket. A scarf creates a ravishing effect on top of a white suit.
The color palette was rooted in the seaside combination of white and navy, merging into shimmering shades of blue and gray before exploding into combinations of purple, pink and sea green.
The shoe of the season is a stripped-down espadrille, replacing the sneakers of the last few seasons, and which Armani himself wore, showing them off with a wry laugh. The caps had no brim, the better to show the face.
“Acceptable. Credible. Safer,” said Armani, summarizing the collection.
GUCCI REVEALS HAHAHA COLLECTION
Alessandro Michele has teamed up with Harry Styles for an off-season collection that infuses tailoring with teenage freedom. The collection is titled “HaHaHa”, touching a feeling of joy and also the expression of his initials: Harry and Alessandro.
“Actually, it was easier for him to play with me to create clothes than for me to sing with him,” Michele joked to reporters at a preview of the collection inside a Milan vintage store.
Harry Styles was just starting his solo career when Michele exploded into the fashion world by proposing what was a new era of gender fluid clothing, looks that immediately appealed to Styles. Michele said the singer incorporated one of his debut pieces as creative director for Gucci into his wardrobe when he was leaving One Direction.
The relationship has grown over the years and takes off in the frequent exchanges of fashion inspiration through WhatsApp.
“Sometimes WhatsApp becomes a mood board,” Michele said. Despite a two-decade age difference, the two have found common ground in fashion: Michele says Styles has restored a kind of teenage gaiety, while Styles has matured into more personalized looks. The double influences are present in the new collection.
The duo created a series of captivating prints against the gingham, featuring the collection’s mascot, a feisty teddy bear, as well as a chomping squirrel and a sheep and cherry combo. Gucci models tailored jackets from the prints and pairs them with colorful wide-legged pants or frayed jeans. The prints are repeated on the pajamas, while the patches inject whimsy into knits or a ribbed white tank top. Accessories include an updated Jackie Bag covered with eyelets.
Mixed up on vintage store shelves, the Gucci HaHaHa collection was often difficult to distinguish from stock.
“It’s a huge compliment to me that it’s confused with vintage,” Michele said. “Vintage means well done.”
JOEONE PERFECT SUMMER PANTS
French designer Louis-Gabriele Nouchi understood the assignment of dressing in warm climates, creating easy-to-wear yet distinctive summer looks for Chinese brand Joeone built around pants.
Nouchi’s designs combined Chinese drapes with athletic hiking pants, including piping and secret utility pockets.
An engraving of the Chinese landscape “A Thousand Miles of Rivers and Mountains” by Wang Ximeng, with bold strokes of blue, green and ocher, created the motif of the season. Details of the painting appeared as a graphic print on a pair of baggy pants, but also in more subtly printed patterns on denim.
Shirtless models strolled through the sunny courtyard of Milan’s Sforzesco castle, their bare torsos showing how the pants fit perfectly at the waist.
“You have to wear the clothes to see the comfort. Pants are the hardest piece to make in a men’s wardrobe to be honest,” said Nouchi. “They have to be functional, they have to be comfortable. They really set the tone of the silhouette, I feel, more so than the jacket.”
ZEGNA BACK TO BASICS
Zegna invited fashion audiences to a sunset parade atop its factory in the Piedmont region, overlooking a vast natural park owned by the Zegna family and highlighting the family company’s tight control of the supply chain.
The collection was imbued with lightness, in form and materials.
The shapes were essential, borderline minimalist, from sports suits with trousers or shorts to tunics with inventive twists or intarsia knits that recall impressionist landscapes. The finest meshes were almost transparent, with hints of shine that caught the slant of light. Bags include macramé crossbody bags.
The color palette of tobacco, brown, coffee with light blue and pink powder connected to the earth.
Zegna is embracing a more sustainable use of materials, deploying fabric scraps and recycled materials, maintaining tight control of its own supply chain from animal to fiber to clothing, and investing in new sustainable production processes.
To that end, Zegna has committed to planting 10,000 new trees in any city where it opens a new store by 2023.