While the golden girls at Versace may have stolen the show at Milan Fashion Week, there was plenty of action elsewhere on the catwalks. From Gucci to Prada and Dolce & Gabbana, find out the shows to know from the Italian capital’s spring 18 womenswear offerings.
Versace’s golden Gianni homage
This year marks the 20th anniversary of Gianni Versace’s death, and in homage to his legacy, Donatella Versace’s spring 18 show was a celebration of all things vintage Versace: bold baroque prints, leopard and excess with modernised outlines. Beaded catsuits, decorated with prints of Vogue and Marilyn Monroe were dramatic show pieces, while the Barbie-esque slogan T-shirts are sure to prove popular with consumers. Without a doubt however, the wow moment of the show came at the close as five of the original Supers – Cindy Crawford, Carla Bruni, Claudia Schiffer, Naomi Campbell and Helena Christensen – reunited and took to the catwalk.
Gucci goes glam-rock
Alessandro Michele’s opulent reign at Gucci continued apace for spring 18. Glam rock, the 1980s, heritage and Disney were just a few of the myriad references that appeared in the show. It seems as if nearly everything Gucci produces at the moment is a hit – the standout items included the sequinned Snow White sweater, tweed suiting and neat bags that tied around the waist.
Party time at Missoni
There was an understated party atmosphere to the Missoni show, where Angela Missoni was celebrating her 20th season at the helm of the brand. Signature knitwear held a lurex shine, mirroring the sparkle seen across the spring catwalks so far. Fabrics were sheer and patterns muted, giving a slightly toned-down feeling to the bold designs. The cardigans, for men and women, stood out this season thanks to a mix of pop-art inspired and classic shapes.
Activist icons from Prada
Miuccia Prada looked to the works of female artists to inform her spring 18 offering. With cartoon prints, boxy shapes and bright pops of pattern and colour, this was a collection that brimmed with a sense of power. Often inspired by ideas of activism and feminism, this Prada collection was youthful and bold and the cartoon motifs were instant Influencer catnip. Highlights included the oversized tangerine leather coat with pop art detailing and polka dot shoulders, as well as the crisp collared shirts and messy tweed coats.
Cowboy colour-play at Bottega Veneta
With details including shimmering fringing, eyelet rivets and chunky buckled belts, and leather and suede dominating the fabrications, there was a cowboy charm suffusing Thomas Maier’s spring collection at Bottega Veneta. The overall impact was muted, however, by the soft, pastel colour palette – where blush pink and lilac (both strong trends from the Milan catwalks) were artfully combined with chartreuse, turquoise and ruby reds. Shimmering fabrics – silk and velvet – gave the more evening-orientated items an opulence that offset the slouchy silhouettes. Highlights included a bejewelled chartreuse velvet jumpsuit, but the jackets – from billowing copper trenches to tonal chocolate brown bombers – are sure to be hits with buyers.
Jil Sander’s new generation
Design duo Lucie and Luke Meier made their catwalk debut at the helm of Jil Sander in Milan for spring 18. Minimalism has always been at the heart of the Jil Sander aesthetic, and while the Meiers followed this in some regards – crisp suiting, shirting and structured coats forming the backbone of the collection – there was a more feminine, relaxed feel to much of the collection. Dresses came both as rigidly structured maxi-shirt dresses, but also in wispy, translucent chiffons with blouson sleeves and swinging fringing. These were the top pick, along with the stiff, classically Sander overcoats.
Geometric logomania at Fendi
Fendi offered up a distinctly geometric collection this season. Not only were designs cut in regular, angular shapes, with sharp cut-outs, strip embellishments and crisp outlines, but they were also adorned with geometric patterning. Checks and stripes appeared in varying pastel shades, and even the floral pieces had a crisp “paint-by-numbers” quality – all sharp edges and defined colours. The pieces to note however, as logomania returns with vigour to the catwalks, were those decorated with the recurring interlocking “F” pattern. Luxurious fur bombers, bags and sheer skirts all came emblazoned with the motif.
Celebrating 50 years of Etro
In celebration of the brand’s 50-year anniversary, Etro combined its men’s and women’s shows for the first time in Milan as siblings Kean and Veronica Etro brought together their usually separate work. The overall tone was one of heightened bohemian glamour, and men and women shared various items – oversized trenches and billowing paisley robes looked elegant on both sexes. This fluid approach created a more refreshing feel in both collections, toning down some of the more whimsical feminine dresses and giving the menswear a laid-back, dandy charm.
Opulent allure from Dolce & Gabbana
Ever opulent, Dolce & Gabbana brought Milan Fashion Week to a close in typically exuberant style. Themed as a Queen of Hearts- inspired show, the collection was classic D&G, from the opening of the brand’s iconic black dresses through the multi-coloured, eye-popping patterns and luxurious jewelled creations that make the brand a favourite on Instagram. Three-dimensional decoration added to the sense of sheer, brash luxury that pervaded the looks, many of which were decorated with patterns featuring everyday items – pods of peas, cannoli, and jammy dodgers all made cameos in the lavish designs.