Best shows from MMFW FW18: N˚21, Giorgio Armani and Fendi
Milan Men's Fashion Week
On the last day of the Milan shows, he checks out the refined street wear proposed by Alessandro Dell'Acqua at N˚21; views the elegant double-breasted suiting offered by Giorgio Armani, and speaks to designer Silvia Fendi about her "FABULOUS" travel collection staged in a makeshift airport luggage carousel.
Simply click play and listen to him provide his fresh take of all the runway action — including a backstage chat with Silvia Fendi about what inspired those crazy umbrella hats in her fall/winter 2018 menswear show.
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N˚21: STRANGER THINGS
Designer: Alessandro Dell'Acqua
Synopsis: There's a certain refinement and elegance to what Dell'Acqua designs, so even though it was a collection that was carried by the prevailing winds of menswear trends — puffer coats, hooded slickers, rubberized Chelsea boots, shearling coats and red (almost Buffalo) plaid — there was a lightness to the pieces. Outerwear was unlined for movement, necklaces came in the form of nonchalantly tied shoelaces, and trousers — how about those trousers — were either elasticised or had extended tab closure fastenings at the waist, cut full, truncated above the ankle, and bore a contrast grosgrain ribbon running down the side. Bellissimo! With the trousers presented in tobacco brown, the colour palette for the rest of the pieces played off that foundation — azure blues, merlot reds, and pine greens — held together by the strong 1980s reference hammered home by a soundtrack that included the theme song for Stranger Things and the collection's main print of a motel signboard plastered onto crushed shirts.
GIORGIO ARMANI: PROUD AND GENTLE
Designer: Giorgio Armani
Synopsis: The show notes foretold of a collection for "men who dress carefully, without frivolity, and who express themselves through nonchalant gestures, in a natural dialogue between body and clothes." And this dialogue manifested into a classic Armani collection — steeped in deep navys, slate greys, and hypnotic ebony with shots of emerald and ruby — that accentuated the neck. There were bulbous bombers with high neck closures, exaggerated mandarin collars on white shirting protruding out of jackets, and a closing procession of tuxedos with shawl lapels artfully puffed and flipped. A beautiful collection for men that are, at once, both proud (the masculine double-breasted blazers with peak lapels to underscore the shoulders) yet gentle (expressed in the soft hand of the tactile cashmere and elegant velvet that ruled the runway).
FENDI: FLY AWAY WITH FENDI
Designer: Silvia Fendi
Synopsis: Hands down, the strongest show at Milan Men's Fashion Week this fall/winter 2018 season. The runway was turned into a "FENDI" airport for "FAMILY" and "FRIENDS" with a working luggage carousel running down the centre (these 'F' words plastered onto advertising signboards along the carousel). When the show started, the departure sign board (that is, the analog variety with the flickering alphabets and numerals) rattled to life, showing the departure time for various locations all set at 2pm — the starting time of the show. The carousel kicked into gear, spitting out a pram, suitcases and trunks all covered in the house's traditional double F logo. This iconic house symbol was the starting point of the collection — emblazoned across furry zip blousons, on the underside of a long parka, as well as countless totes and sling bags — before giving way to large check suiting finished with a laminate coating (inspired by the protective clothing worn by maintenance staff when cleaning planes) and those super fun umbrella hats. Guest collaborator for this season? Arist @hey_reilly who came up with a camouflage print featuring a collage of items including bananas, horses, hammers, and the word "FREEDOM" stretched onto puffer parkas and full-length fur-lined coats. In short, Slivia Fendi has, in her unique mix of crafty hubris and humour, made the airport "FABULOUS".
Listen to all our audio reviews of the best menswear shows from Milan men's fashion week fall/winter 2018.