This article titled “Giorgio Armani says his latest collection is an ode to coexistence” was written by Scarlett Conlon Deputy fashion editor in Milan, for theguardian.com on Saturday 24th February 2018 13.32 UTC
Traffic was at a standstill outside the Armani/Silos fashion and art museum in south Milan on Saturday as 500 people filed in to watch fashion juggernaut Giorgio Armani’s show.
The 83-year-old designer, who has been staging shows in the city for more than five decades, wanted this autumn/winter 2018 collection to be “an ode to coexistence as opposed to exclusion”.
“I’ve always seen my work as a reaction to the times we live [in], because clothes affect behaviours and attitudes,” he wrote to his guests in notes placed on their seats.
The womenswear show, peppered with a handful of menswear looks, painted a picture of the worldly Armani woman at ease. Silhouettes were louche and relaxed with roomy batwing-sleeve coats and long cardigans layered over cropped jodhpur-style trousers.
Prints and knits were insouciant and arty, while the jewellery and headwear were bohemian and bold. There was plenty of sparkle too, with crystal-embellished jackets and glittering evening gowns out in force to keep Armani aficionados happy.
The designer’s shows are a sum of his extensive experience, brought together, he says, by his “taste of sophisticated simplicity”.
On the other side of the city, British designer Paul Andrew made his womenswear debut at Salvatore Ferragamo.
The designer has been director of women’s footwear at Ferragamo since 2016, but his remit expanded to creative director of the womenswear line in October last year with the view to “unify all categories of the women’s business with coherence”, chief executive Eraldo Poletto said at the time.
Although the designer studied ready-to-wear while at the Berkshire College of Art and Design, his career took him down the footwear path when he won an award for his shoes at graduate fashion week.
Following stints designing catwalk shoes for Donna Karan and Diane von Furstenberg, he established his eponymous company in 2012 to critical acclaim.
His vision for what should be in a Ferragamo customer’s wardrobe chimes nicely with what can be found in her shoe boxes: precision-made luxury. Sharp, modern and sophisticated tailoring in lustrous silk-satins, ostrich leather and suede.
A focus on outerwear proved successful in the form of poncho-style capes and trenchcoats with brushed-gold hardware, a detail that ran through the collection from heels to zips.
While classic scarf prints – which have been a dominant trend this season – were found on dresses and shirts, acknowledging the heritage of the storied Italian house, Andrew is giving the brand a fresh perspective for 2018.
guardian.co.uk © Guardian News & Media Limited 2010