No catwalk masks for Milan as it looks to brighter post-pandemic future

Ian Griffiths, the British designer of luxurious powerhouse Max Mara, is making garments for “the third Italian renaissance”.

At Milan vogue week the temper is optimistic for the post-pandemic future, and bursting with nationwide pleasure. The garments on the catwalks radiate confidence that subsequent spring will see Italy dressed for the seaside in swimsuits and sandals, or for the workplace in pastel trouser fits. There isn’t a tracksuit in sight. And whereas coordinating designer masks are the front-row accent of the season, face coverings are notably absent from the catwalk imaginative and prescient of what subsequent summer season will seem like.

Classic Italian riviera type at Etro Photograph: SIPA/REX Shutterstock

Etro is banking on ladies shopping for into basic Italian riviera type, with high-waisted shorts and shirts knotted on the waist, brightly printed bralettes and twine sandals. “I realised this assortment had to be about Italy,” defined designer Veronica Etro.

At Sportmax, fashions with beach-damp hair and bronzed cheekbones wore fine-knit clothes in sunshine yellow, which is shaping up to be this week’s standout color. Alberta Ferretti confirmed her ethereal, ice-cream colored sundresses in a 15th-century fortress in Milan, “to reinforce the message of strength and solidarity that Milan and Italy have shown throughout this difficult situation”.

A model wears a creation as part of the Sportmax show in Milan.

A mannequin wears a creation as a part of the Sportmax present in Milan. Photograph: Luca Bruno/AP

“In Italy’s postwar second renaissance, Max Mara was one of the companies that developed the idea of Bella Figura, which is about making yourself look and feel at your best in order to perform at your best,” stated Griffiths after his present. “When I started designing this collection I was locked down at my cottage in Suffolk, and I didn’t know if we would be having this show, or even if these pieces would get made. But Italy handled the coronavirus crisis exceptionally well, and the fact that fashion week is happening here is a credit not just to this industry but to the way all of Italy has behaved. I am very proud of Italy.”

Mask-wearing is diligently noticed amongst showgoers at Milan vogue week – getting a chandelier earring caught within the ear loops as you take away your masks to knock again an espresso is a brand new occupational hazard – however not like at New York and London vogue weeks, the place Christian Siriano and Bora Aksu designed masks to complement the garments, face coverings have been notably absent from catwalk collections. The trade is banking on the upcoming return of dressing-up. “If you’re only going to the office two or three days a week instead of five, or only going out in the evening once or twice a week, then those become events to dress up for,” reasoned Griffiths, who added caped or ruffled sleeve particulars to light-weight trouser fits.

The Max Mara present was held in an open-air courtyard. “It is important to me to do a real show, because Max Mara is about real clothes,” stated the designer. “And even though we could only have a small audience this season, there is still a special chemistry in watching people react to clothes they are seeing in front of them for the first time.”

A model on the catwalk for the Max Mara show in Milan.

A mannequin on the catwalk for the Max Mara present in Milan. Photograph: Antonio Calanni/AP

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