AW18 MFW: The Round Up

The third week of our fashion packed month lands us in Milan, the home of impeccable tailoring, attention to detail and nostalgic tradition. This year, it seemed accessories were the inescapable trend at the Italian fashion capital. From puppies to drones being the ultimate carrier of handbags, here are our highlights from Milan Fashion Week.

Idiosyncratically bonkers; the perfect description for Alessendro Michele’s entire vision at Gucci’s AW18 collection in Milan. Set upon a warehouse transformed into an operation theatre, there were Game of Thrones references, a three eyed women labelled the ‘Gucci Cyborg’ and models carrying replicas of their own heads; the accessories stole the show. However, this shouldn’t take away the genius behind the garments. In Michele’s metaphor for how people construct their own identities, he cut, spliced and sewed different fabrics together as if a body on an operating table; which formed his audacious collection. The Italian perfectly used his eclectic signature prints on folk dresses, Chinese pyjamas and oversized bomber jackets to pull off a show that left us all amazed, in one way or another. For headgear; think knitted and lace balaclavas with fringing and embellishment.

It was eighties themed with a western twist at Alberta Ferretti; which itself, is becoming a bit of a trend. Deterring from her classic ethereal dresses she’s so well known for, Ferretti designed a collection more in line with the fashion currents, stating the look was for a ‘sophisticated’ woman. “Women today have changed, and fashion needs to speak in a different way. It shouldn’t be so correct, it should show personality.” The show opened with Kaia Gerber in a silver studded black denim jumpsuit and closed with Gigi Hadid in a free flowing mesh like gown. In between, there were big shoulders, high wastes and 80’s vibe garments in silvers, greens and monochromatic blacks. A look of the show, however, was Edita Vilkeviciute’s metallic lamé, Grecian goddess-like gown. Whilst Ferretti’s exploration into a new look has been a big success, we feel there needs to be a more satisfying balance between the new empowered female and her signature dresses we all know and love her for.

Since Jeremy Scott’s appointment as creative director, the American visionary has delighted Moschino fans with inspired collections from Barbie, aliens and even Spongebob Squarepants. This year was wackily not different. On the city outskirts, Scott transformed an empty warehouse into a long catwalk spoilt with tunnels lit by UV lights. At first, models came in a succession of tamed candy coloured Jackie-O styled skirts, suits and shift dresses with matching flicked-bob hair styles. Illustrator, Ben Frost, collaborated with the designer to create the bold printed looks scattered throughout the collection. A classically kooky Jeremy Scott production followed the disciplined start with frocks made from Crazy Fruit sweet wrappers and models painted head to toe in shades of orange, pink and blue. Simply coloured 1960’s tailoring dominated the show in the style of flight attendant-esque jacket-skirt suits. Skirts gave way to flared trousers before a finale of two-tone dresses made from opposing fabrics; think bright smooth silks and rough crystals, spliced together with the zig-zag of a lightning bolt.

At Max Mara, the vision is always clear cut. This fall the Max Mara woman is a rock ‘n’ roll star. With a soundtrack to match the referenced punk queens, Siouxsie and Sinead, in the show notes, models came storming down the catwalk in layered leathers and leopard printed overalls. Hemlines were long, necklines were high and the maxi skirts looked as if they were made from woollen rugs. Continuing the ever existent trend of clashing prints and textures, seen last week in London, leopard prints were layered with tonal checks and an ostrich skirt with pinstripe trousers. Of course, there were different interpretations of the classic Max Mara camel coat, including a pink and leopard print, whilst the brand also offered a chic alternative to the modern woman in the workplace; a new three-piece suit: a pencil skirt worn over skinny trousers with a matching coat; power dressing at its ultimate.

It was difficult to fully focus at Tod’s Autumn/Winter show when they took the meaning of the year of the dog very literally? Gigi Hadid opened the show carrying a floppy eared French bulldog to gasps of the audience as they scurried to produce their mobiles to capture the money shot. A tiny Chihuahua, white Terrier and King Charles all followed down the runway, producing quite the Instagram stir! The risky stunt ran in synergy with the warmingly stunning designs. A hearty palette of caramel coffee and mustard was used in a huge success when paired with rich textures; leather pencil skirts, sheepskin coats, suede jumpsuits and oversized fleeces all mixed and matched together. The footwear had a focus of comfort; think chunky fringed loafers, crepe sole wedges and inside-out sheepskin para boots. Bags either came big and bold - almost as a home for the adorable canines - or fashioned into a utility belt to match the rest of the outfit.

Just 14 hours after Dolce & Gabbana’s ‘secret’ fashion show dubbed ‘Secrets & Diamonds’, the design duo made a declaration of love to the fashion industry. Whilst we are all aware of the pairs dedication for their craft, a particularly enthused Dolce explained the shows title, Fashion Devotion, at a preview hours before the show. “Fashion is not work, fashion is devotion,” he said. “You live, sleep and eat with fashion, you never stop thinking about it and you love it with all your heart.”On the catwalk, this love was expressed through religious iconography using embroidered haloes, dog collar shirting, devil references and, of course, the sacred heart found on dresses, coats and the new bags flown in on drones almost like ethereal robotic messengers. There was a little something for everyone in the collection; from sneakers and sequinned tracksuits to billowing ball gowns and sharp James Bond-esque suits. Overall, an incredible collection from the Italian fashion pair epitomising the spectacle of Italian extravagance.

Having been spoilt with ultimate atelier and design craftsmanship, we head to Paris for the final instalment of the AW18 fashion weeks. Au revior!