Back to Milano, my favorite of Italian cities, and what did I find? The ever trending gender neutral juxtaposition, alongside my penchant for all things colorful, and an undercover secret: my inner biker boy. Throwbacks and secrets, really.
Missoni is synonymous for color, and I’m eternally grateful to Angela Missoni for always giving me the inspiration of life each time. This time, she mixed it with one of my other secret passions of being an undercover biker boy (surprised?). The homage was to her late brother Vittorio, and the inspiration paid off well, with models posing with motorbikes of various styles and types, dressed to adorn themselves on it. With signature stripes and colors across the knitwear and solid tees, there were racing flag inspired checkerboard prints seen aplenty, alongside an infusion of leather juxtaposed with cottons and linens. Like last season, ombre tone on tone effects added tranquility to the otherwise bold collection. Moving from the rather California biker boy style cardigan and racing leather look were deconstructed suits and to my surprise, longline shirts and tunics, almost like kurtas and kaftans, with graphics and motifs and embroidery that added gender neutrality to masculine styles. I could see myself eyeing any hue of those leather shorts to pair with a tee or two during any transition weather series.
Injected with color and attitude, it was the return of the retro with a touch of military by Dean and Dan Caten. More interestingly, it had a mix of feminine, lingerie elements juxtaposed with the likes of utility pockets, cargo pants and bomber jackets, blurring the gender neutral line even further. Unbuttoned and undone accessories added flair to the runway, with cargo greens in skimpy waistcoats worn atop tees and dresses, shorts over pants, all with zippers, patchwork embroidery, utility pockets, unbuttoned excess buttons, and in fabrics of silk mixed with nylon. A few peaks showcased corsets, juxtaposing the paradoxical epitome of classic masculinity with penultimate feminineness. My favorites were the lightweight knit tops, that would easily fly high with minimal accessories. The utilitarian designs were amplified with brocade, and a sashay into color-blocking, moving from greens to neon and multi-colored stripes. Going from tracksuits and sporty looks to full on Victorian ruffle dresses, the brand infused a lot of contradictions that seemed to work, nonetheless. Especially in an era when being trend-averse was spot on trend.
Picture courtesy WWD.