Having technical prowess is one thing. Using it to enchant is another. This season, there were embroidered narrative elements aplenty: shipwrecks at Alexander McQueen, shooting stars at No. 21, and tragic love stories at Dior and Valentino, where Pierpaolo Piccioli took us back to the Middle Ages with broken hearts sewn onto beautiful, beautiful dresses. Even Loewe stitched its nautical narrative onto its Joyce bags with shells and bells.
(From L-R): Dior, Alexander McQueen, Prada, No. 21, Valentino, Loewe
What was the common denominator of the utilitarian bag belts at Marni, the wraparound belts at Balenciaga and the pannier belts at Loewe? They all accentuated the hips. Then there were the teeny tiny strings at Céline – very DIY. The “belt” at Dior might not have been an individual strap, but the industrial band was a key feature. At Fendi, belts matched the bag straps.
(From L-R): Balenciaga, Marni, Céline, Dior, Fendi, Loewe
Three iterations of ruffles appeared on the runways this season: flat, wavy and delicate. At Moschino and Gucci, the colossal flat silhouette reminded us of Thierry Mugler’s glory days in the ’80s. Meanwhile, there was an air of playfulness at Marc Jacobs and Delpozo where ruffles were super rippled, and wow moments turned the corner at Alexander McQueen in the form of leg-of-mutton sleeves. Zimmermann and Christopher Kane mixed things up with ruching, making their renditions fit for the street.
(From L-R): Zimmerman, Gucci, Marc Jacobs, Alexander McQueen, Moschino, No. 21
At Chanel, we saw Tron, a visual masterpiece of the ’80s. Even the set was done up to look like a supercomputer, and the film’s neon colourways appeared as spirited prints. At Prada, lifestyles were more at play: namely, the odd pale-bright contrasts prevalent during the design movement initiated by the Memphis Group (whose members included Alessandro Mendini, Martine Bedin and Marco Zanini) in the ’80s. Though a bulk of the collection was decidedly ’90s, there were looks that couldn’t decide if they were heading to the gym or the library – how very ’80s!
(From L-R): Chanel, Prada