Lycra-clad glutes, leopard print, sunglasses – whatever the weather, subtlety – have a day off! Yep, it must be that time of year again, Milan men’s fashion week. Kicking off after 'London Collections: Men' – the banker brother revving up in some sporty little number – Milan mostly played it safe and kept to classical tailoring, with a refined interpretation of modern culture, just as you would expect. It’s for the men, not the boys. Pringle of Scotland and Prada did it well, playing with the conceptual while staying true to themselves. Prada are fucking brilliant.
There were the odd breaks with convention, one being a nod to Britpop. Blur, Suede and Pulp are back on the radio – get your Parkas out! Here’s a look at the standout trends.
‘Meggings’, or ‘leggings’ as I like to call them, are a tighter, elasticated version of ‘mousers’ or ‘men’s trousers’, as we know them in the UK. They’ve been threatening to invade for a while now, and now that male vanity is all the rage, it might well be the time. Basketball shorts worn over leggings, like I mentioned in the London Collections roundup, offer more discretion, more basket for your balls. Aside from the leggings, there were casual trousers in silk, cashmere, cotton to wean men off their jeans and chinos.
Well, it is an autumn/winter collection, but still, so much variety. Fur-collared jackets in particular were seen across shows, from Salvatore Ferragamo to Diesel. At John Richmond, parkas trundled down the catwalk to a soundtrack of Joy Division. There were variations on the parka all over, including at Trussardi where an Oasis mullet was also parading, sprigs of hair curling around the ears. At Gucci, velvet jackets were worn with silk scarves and aviators – a bit Jarvis Cocker, seeing as we’re on the Britpop theme.
Colours veered towards leafy and earthy greens, and dark brights, if that’s even a thing – reds, blues and purples. They were rich and sumptuous and bold without being garish.
The first line of this article wasn’t some dismissive remark about the clichés of Italian fashion. Well, it was a little. But it was also truth. Animal prints this season came courtesy of – shock – our own Burberry. On shoes, trims and full overcoats, prints were a decadent 70s take on leopard and zebra. What recession?
IT BAGS FOR THE BOYS
Bags were all over the catwalks. It makes men look so much more purposeful, doesn’t it, if they’re carrying a bag. “I’m just off to do something very, very important. All the things I will need are in this bag right here.” There were hold-alls at Gucci, bumbags at Fendi, hard-cased backpacks at Z Zegna and even clutch bags. Weird thing is, they didn’t look that weird.
At Jil Sander, we saw shiny patent leather. Slick and serious and not at all nostalgic, it was refreshing to see a collection that wasn’t winking and elbowing with irony.
Cavalli, among others, chose to bring back the bow tie. Classic, smart and quirky, even today the bow tie retains that undeniable capacity to irritate. We’re not far enough from the checked shirt and red-rimmed glasses of ‘geek chic’ to be considering bow ties. Versace’s lacy underwear vests: beautiful, yes, attention seeking and camp, yes – but then, why not? Cardigans, as well as they were done at Missoni, still seem a bit French Connection. Not now.
You can read our Paris roundup on AYA tomorrow.