Big sleeves and high necks, there was an Edwardian feel to the Fendi collection – even slouchy bombers getting a historical and voluminous revamp with billowing leg-of-mutton sleeve action.
It opened in blocks of colour – red, coral, white, and moved on through to teal and black: a Fendi rainbow proving to best show off all the tactility going on here. Pockets and brace details were thickly stitched into place or appeared stapled (but not); cut-outs flashed flesh so that an expanse of back was revealed behind or at the waist; pieces seemed industrially patched together; thick suede latticework for neat boxy jackets; gleaming petals punctuating bodices; there was a distinct historical feel and an armour quality to the pieces. Those flowers weren’t the traditionally pretty variety – their stems had stealth.
But this toughness, this edge, was counterbalanced by those billowing blouses and gowns that invited a breeze to pass on through them. And as always at a Fendi show, the eye is on the lookout for new-season accessories. Here boxy bags held in the hand with just a hint of a strap to slip your fingers through to keep them close at all times – for, let’s face it, you never really want to let a Fendi bag out of your sight.
THE fashion landscape right now is full of street styles, urban edge and sports accents. We dress down, we feel comfortable and then of course there is the opposite end of the spectrum: dressing for the red carpet. But who really does that?
For those somewhere in the middle of all of this comes salvation in Vera Wang, who designs for adults, riffs on classics and keeps within her own parameters to surprisingly stand out. Masculine shirting, wide-leg, loose trousers and straight-down dresses that gave no hint of feminine curve, jackets and coats of off-kilter proportions – it was full of subtle segues.
Some things are made to go together; gin and tonic, strawberries and cream, salt and vinegar, say, so too Anthony Vaccarello and Versace. He – the master of the slit and slashed minidress and pioneer of all-out sex appeal often delivered on leggy best friend, Anja Rubik; and Versus, the sidekick of Versace, the Italian house that practically invented sex – are a match made in heaven.
Half of the battle of a house producing a winning collection is in the hiring of a designer who just “gets it” and the hiring of the Belgian (of Italian descent) here is not much short of genius. Bravo to whoever cooked up that contract. One can only imagine the fun Vaccarello must have had mining the archives. It must have felt like all his birthdays and Christmases had come at once. Gold! Medusa heads! Bondage strapping! Safety pin dresses! Yes! Yes! Yes! Yes!
All of that was whipped up tonight (even, including BFF Rubik). There were so many brilliant looks here today and here’s the crux of it, and really, where others before him have perhaps failed; he kept it simple. Firstly, it was almost all black with gold accents, well, why over-complicate matters when that will do just nicely? It wasn’t all thigh skimming miniskirts, there were some great low-slung tailored trousers partnered up with bondage-backed bodysuits boasting gold chokers as halter necks, as delicate as fine jewellery, and elsewhere, unbuttoned black silk shirts (sometimes, combining the two into a fierce jumpsuit). He rendered the medusa head into super desirable belts, and re-proposed the safety pin dress into a neat proposition for now.
And even better news: it’s all available to buy online now. One question, what are you still doing reading this?
May is turning out to be an erratic month in terms of weather. Earlier this week, temperatures fast-forwarded to July, but now we’re back to crisp spring breezes. Since most of us can’t be bothered to curate a true “transitional” wardrobe, take a tip from the street-style photo above or pop to France and see how the Parisians work this style – for now stay hidden, layer your favorite black pieces until it’s safe to show our legs again.