MILAN, June 19, (AP): A fresh breeze buffeted Italy’s fashion capital during the second day of Milan Fashion Week on Sunday, both literally, bringing relief from the June heat, and figuratively, as young designers took the spotlight.
They brought with them fresh silhouettes with new proportions and reinterpretations of old summertime favorites from linens to stripes.
Here are highlights from menswear previews Sunday in Milan for next spring and summer:
Miuccia Prada took inspiration from graphic novels for her latest collection, which aims to create a dialogue between the virtual world and the real world.
The virtual world is in an exhibit at the brand’s Fondazione Prada contemporary art exhibition space. Fashion is Prada’s reality.
She employed two artists — James Jean from Los Angeles and Ollie Schrauwen of Belgium — to create graphic stories on a human and not superhero scale that covered the walls of the showroom and became the prints that defined Sunday’s menswear collection in Milan.
Scenes included a robot monkey and an oversized spider descending to pick up houses. Prada said she was attracted to the comics because they turn out information in bit-size pieces — much the same way social media does today.
Guillaume Meilland’s second collection for Ferragamo is inspired by the Mediterranean coastline shared by his native France and adopted Italy.
The looks are defined by texture: cable-knit fishermen’s sweaters, velvety shorts, corduroy trousers and suede laser cut tops, all hearty fare for wind-swept seaside strolls. The designer also added touches of whimsy like sea horse prints and coral key chains.
“Yes I like the idea of having, for me, something very Italian, something very much linked to the idea of the holidays and the seaside,” Meilland said backstage. “Textures, colors, we are trying combine soft velvet, English fabrics and heavy linens … The fluid and something more rough.”
Lee Wood laid the seams bare at Dirk Bikkembergs during his second season as its creative director.
The clean collection revealed the construction details that create rhythms with their repetition, from the patchwork trousers to the intarsia knitwear.
Wood said he was inspired by the brutalism architectural movement of the late 1960s and early 1970s that stood against adornment.
“I wanted it to be brutal. I wanted it to be honest. I wanted it to be like men should be,” Lee said backstage. “I don’t want to see men all pretty and perfect. I think a man should be rugged.”
Korean designer Munsoo Kwon made his Milan debut in the Armani theater with a collection that contained some measure of autobiography.
The triptych collection includes pieces based on European tailoring, Korean military wear and a series of character looks. The thread that connects them all: The YOLO phenomenon, previously, before the invention of abbreviation-loving social media, known as “You Only Live Once.”
The 37-year-old Kwon expresses his whimsy with out-of-proportion cuts: Boyish striped sweaters that are part of his character series are gigantic with wide, trailing arms, dwarfing the wearer.
The hallway of an artistic high school was the runway for the Sunnei brand by designers Loris Messina and Simone Rizzo. The occasion: The last day of school.
“For us, this is an expression of total freedom,” Rizzo said of the collection.
The looks are more artsty student than beach, even if the striped button-down tops and shorts recalled beach umbrellas. Suits featured boxy jackets and athletic drawstring pants, which could be worn with a plasticized denim overcoat. Footwear included sling-back sneakers.
Dean and Dan Caten, the Canadian twins behind the DSquared2 label, have made their mark on Milan — most recently with a neon maple leaf on the former distillery where they showed next year’s warm weather looks for men and women.
The designers put a jangle in the models’ walk with buckled leather straps in neat rows up the sleeves of sweaters, down the legs of trousers and leggings, and across boots.
Hawaiian floral prints were the accent of the season, with floral shirts paired busily with leopard leggings or worn over the trademark Canadian plaid. Painted florals accented leather pants and skirts, and appeared as panel overlays on denim jackets.