That fashion repeats itself, that it is cyclically fed back from the past, is not news. That it begins to do so not only for aesthetic reasons but also as a commercial and promotional strategy is revealing. This Saturday, Alessandro Michele, Gucci's creative director, announced the launch of Vault, an
where, together with garments from emerging designers such as Cormio or Yueqi Qi,
restored and personalized
of the firm
will be sold
. “It is very difficult to beat the past even if you are a talented designer. The past is not something opposite to the present, but two dimensions that constantly dialogue, and, from my point of view, a bridge to the future ”, explained Michele at a press conference in Milan.
The Italian's project is not whimsical. The sale of second-hand luxury products is valued today, according to data from the Boston Group consultancy, at 34,000 million euros and is expected to reach 60,000 in four years. Although Michele insists that Vault is not designed to be profitable: "This tool for finding and sharing relics is 100% a gift from the company to me."
Another way to channel the nostalgic appetite is to reissue the icons themselves, as Dolce & Gabbana also did on Saturday. Italian creators decided to revisit — and honor — their first collections from the 2000s through their corset dresses,
and minimal skirts. The firm even recovered the top that Jennifer López wore in her legendary video
Jenny from the block
. "Everything passed through the filter of our current experience," explained Domenico Dolce in a meeting prior to his show. His proposal, he continues, "is a tribute to the sexiest femininity, where we celebrate the need to have fun, but not in a superficial way, and to return to the party as a way of being together."
Four models from the Dolce & Gabbana show, on September 25, 2021 in Milan.Monica Feudi
Like Dolce & Gabbana, Armani looks back to the 2000s and returns to the theater on Via Borgonuovo where he had not paraded for 20 years.
Two recurring elements - flat shoes and knotted headscarves - make up a collection of nomadic inspiration presented by smiling models.
And, yes, that the models smile on the catwalk is news.
By force of repetition, Prada also managed to emphasize the pillars of a collection, his own, which, at times, played to interpret eighteenth-century aesthetics in a minimalist key. Namely: aged leather garments, dresses abruptly cinched at the waist as if it were an operating room gown - and that in some of its multiple declines were decorated with whales - corset-shirts, sweaters with preformed breasts as in a armor and mini skirts with a tail. Insisting on these elements by versioning them in infinite colors and fabrics is something that few can afford without falling into boredom. Miuccia Prada and Raf Simons are two of them. To reaffirm that they are not afraid of redundancy, the co-designers decided to merge the physical format with the face-to-face format. Or, rather, with the face-to-face ones.The brand held two parades in parallel and with identical scenography in Shanghai and Milan. In a game of cyber mirrors, the Chinese parade was projected on the screens installed among the guests of the Italian capital, while the real models walked down its catwalk. And vice versa.
Moncler also connected the digital and physical through two
that were taking place at the same time in Shanghai and Milan;
the European, presented by Alicia Keys and the Chinese, by the actress and singer Victoria Song.
Both appeared in hologram form in the opposite event.
The future of fashion was not elastane, but a Christopher Nolan movie.
A Sportmax design for Spring / Summer 2022 presented at Milan Fashion Week in September 2021. Alberto Maddaloni
Sportmax once again turned to the codes that have defined it for more than fifty years - that is, sports aesthetics and textile research - to build a collection that is commercial and conceptual at the same time. Like parachutes, their dresses twisted around the models' bodies thanks to pleats, deconstructed structures and industrial straps. The lightness of the fabrics, sometimes transparent, and the palette of raw colors gave the collection a delicacy that contrasted with the strength of its volumes, halfway between a representation of our post-apocalyptic adaptability and a Gothicism gone by bleach. Salvatore Ferragamo did the same with leather work in a collection where masculine proposals overshadowed feminine ones, starting with shoes,the product that has made the Florentine brand famous.
After confinement and social restrictions, from the New York catwalk to Milan, there is a renewed desire to "teach, celebrate and liberate the body", as explained by the American Michael Kors.
Translated into Italian, this concept is expressed in Missoni, for example, through very brief bikinis, silhouettes that recover, as in Dolce & Gabbana, the
and necklines that descend below the navel.
Dua Lipa shows at the Versace Spring / Summer 2022 fashion show at Milan Fashion Week in September 2021.Ik Aldama / GTRES
The length of Tod's skirts is also closer to this part of the anatomy than to the knees. The collection of the Italian firm, practical and easy to understand, fulfills its purpose, which is none other than to highlight leather work and craftsmanship as pillars of its identity. The
leather dresses primoroso
accompany bags-watches, sports that stretch to become boot and suede sandals topped by a XL version of its iconic
, areas quilting the sole of those moccasins Diana Wales became a trend, first, and a classic for the Italian firm, later.
Versace, the house that made sensuality its hallmark, was not far behind with tiny bodices and rubber skirts.
On the catwalk, Dua Lipa, Naomi Campbell and Lourdes León (Madonna's daughter).
Around her, a group of burly, shirtless fans were swinging a ceiling of silk scarves by pulling huge strings.
That the clothes had to compete for the audience's attention with so many elements was perhaps intentional.
And, in that case, a sure hit.