And so to Peter Dundas and his final collection for Pucci. Since his appointment at the house in 2008, Dundas has energized the brand into a blazing, hyper-coloured fanfare of mega watt clothes for mega watt lifestyles. His unapologetic sense of glamour pitched at leggy starlets – many of them walking here this evening, from Eva Herzigova to his poster girls, Anja Rubik and Natasha Poly – has enlivened the scene no end.
This season, it was astrology and the powers the signs behold that triggered his creativity in what he called the Zodiac collection. Symbols for Aries, Libra, Sagittarius and Scorpio were embroidered in gold and scattered over velvet blazers, dramatic capes and hot pants. For his opening looks, he reprised Emilio Pucci’s black and white prints from the late Fifties and rendered them in swirling patterns created with monochrome micro sequins – with embroidered thigh high boots to match, naturally. Intarsia fox furs, flared trousers in crushed velvet, even, a pearl-fringed flapper dress was thrown into the hedonistic mix – it was everything that we’ve come to expect of a Pucci collection under Dundas’s direction – and then some.
He took his bow surrounded by his design team who emerged from backstage to warmly applaud him. Perhaps he won’t disappear from horizons for long: when it comes to what’s written in his own stars, if the rumors play into his horoscope he’s headed to Roberto Cavalli – which, sounds a lot like the very definition of the stars aligning.
“Its effortless, it’s all about being effortless, did you see how the models just naturally put their hands in their pockets?” Paul Smith was quite taken by the aspirational army of easygoing urbanites that had walked the runway just seconds before.
There was nothing flash about this collection, there were no tricky details or smash, bang wallop summer prints and sprays of colour. Instead these clothes were utterly unapologetic in their elevated normcore appeal. Wear this stuff to live in, was the message. Think giant pockets, loose tailored shapes, khaki cotton trousers and easy, breezy sleeveless linen tops. The elegant, striped drop-waist, pleated dress, worn with super chic flat sandals and leather, across-the-body bags made for a wardrobe that chic, metropolitan commuters can feel comfortable in.
The bag featured in almost every look, from backpacks to relaxed folded totes, each came in muted palette (the grey was best) and in buttery leather.
“A modern girl can wear these clothes,” said Smith backstage, ” The fabrics were linen or cotton but there was a structure about them which gave them this bounce and they had life. She’s not looking for attention through her clothing. She’s happy in her own skin.”
THE money shot at this morning’s Giorgio Armani show was the finale look: a shimmering, shining bejewelled being complete with a bob of beads. She encapsulated the glamour of Armani and the designer’s inspiration this season: the sea, the sand and the landscapes they shape.
He started proceedings with a short film directed by the Oscar-winning Paolo Sorrentino and in it, we saw a mystery couple lying on the beach, hand in hand, with only rope to protect their modesty. Had they come from the deep blue sea? Were they from this world of Armani that Sorrentino was introducing? Were they simply on a nice beach day out?
Regardless, when we did get into that Armani water world, the designer took his theme and ran with it – to create multiple dresses that riffed on jellyfish proportions, shapes and movement. Pronounced short skirts splayed over sheer trousers (still an idea that might need some time to catch on) to perfectly replicate the entity in clothes. Fringes trailed from long skirts to reincarnate fish tails and scales and trousers came with pleats that looked like sand ripples – just as though the tide had come in.
The trousers here were mostly cropped and tapered, jackets languid and loose – a series of white suits were particularly beautiful – and shoes flat throughout. This style note helped to keep the collection feeling fresh and youthful too – those glistening dresses somehow seeming less obvious as obligatory eveningwear.
Armani isn’t the only designer diving deep this season – Philipp Plein made his own splash in Milan last night while back in London Ryan Lo took the plunge in his own irreverent way.
To shop Spring/Summer 2015 Giorgio Armani click below:
THAT Seventies Show – is fast becoming the way to sum up Milan Fashion Week, from Gucci to Prada and onto Emilio Pucci.
“It’s always resonated with me. I think it’s a reaction,” said Pucci creative director Peter Dundas backstage by way of explanation. “I really wanted to do it last time so just thought I’m just going to do it.” Fair enough.
Whether the fashion forces of Milan got together to conspire in favour of the era or not, it’s on next summer’s agenda for sure – but it just depends on what kind of Seventies spirit you are.
“It’s my girls,” said Dundas, referring to Poppy Delevingne who was bejewelled and Pucci-fied out front. What he meant was that bohemian and carefree spirit – but situated in a contemporary context.
And this was very much a happy-hippy collection: plunge-neck crochet dresses embroidered with flowers, be-tasselled ponchos of the same effect, wispy butterfly-billowing maxi dresses, psychedelic shades and prints of Zap ice lolly optics, waistcoats, skinny suits, flares – tick, tick, tick for the Seventies. There were even those orange and brown colour clashes.
Halter necks, empire lines, gypsy tops and gilets – the repertoire continued as a mash-up of Fleetwood Mac played out – and then Naomi Campbell took a turn on the catwalk.
With all its colour and exotic psychedelic prints, Pucci is a brand that sits well in the Seventies – and will do in the second wave of the Noughties with so many trend boxes ticked this season.
Click below and shop the vibrant collection of Spring/Summer 2015 Emilio Pucci: