The 7 most talked about moments from Milan Fashion Week AW20
Milan Fashion Week isn't what it used to be this Autumn/Winter 2020 season. Reports of the Covid-19 outbreak hitting the Italian fashion capital affected a few brands, including Giorgio Armani and Angel Chen (from Netflix's Next in Fashion), and Chinese celebrities were absent from most of the shows. That being said, for the rest of the brands that decided that the show must go on, there were no shortage of buzzworthy moments.
1. Gucci brought showgoers behind the scenes
Gucci has always pushed boundaries when it comes to its show-spaces, and this season, instead of the traditional format, creative director Alessandro Michele gave showgoers a full spectacle of his world backstage. Guests were greeted with the prep area where models get their hair and makeup done, before the same models walked over to a rotating carousel where the brand's design team dressed them for the show—all in front of the audience.
2. Prada x Raf Simons
Rumours of Raf Simons joining Prada started swirling a month ago, and now, it's been confirmed to be true—the Belgian designer will be Prada's co-creative designer alongside Miuccia Prada, and this was revealed at a secret press conference held at the end of MFW. The power duo will unveil their first womenswear collection in September during Milan Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2021, and it's undoubtedly going to be one of the most highly anticipated collections to come.
3. Giorgio Armani's empty show
A number of events have come to a halt due to the sudden outbreak of Covid-19 in Italy (seven people have died, and over 200 infected cases have been confirmed), and while Emporio Armani's show—at an earlier date—went on as per usual, Giorgio Armani decided to play it safe and closed its event to public. Models walked the runway in an empty theatre while the show was being livestreamed on its website, Instagram, and Facebook. "This is a preventative measure decided by Mr Armani to support national efforts in safeguarding public health", the brand said on Sunday.
On another note, the designer also spoke about his thoughts on fashion week and fashion as a whole that were met with mixed reactions. Read it here.
4. Phillipp Plein criticised for Kobe Bryant tribute
Known for his over-the-top runways, Philipp Plein's AW20 show has been making headlines for all the wrong reasons. After starting the show with the brand's signature flashy and heavily embellished looks, models—including Jada Pinkett-Smith and Olivia Culpo—appeared on stage in a series of purple-and-gold jerseys that were emblazoned with the Plein logo and Kobe Bryant's number, 24, but that's not it. In the background, numerous vehicles were featured as props on-stage, including two gilded helicopters. This comes almost a month after the late NBA star and his daughter Gianna were involved in a fatal helicopter accident, so needless to say, it didn't take long for social media users to call the designer out for seemingly cashing in on the tragedy, and branding the tribute to be "distasteful" and "disgusting".
The designer responded by releasing a statement saying, "The catwalk set-up was already planned and designed in November 2019, way before this tragic accident occurred, this is the reason why there were gilded helicopters on the runway. I would have clearly removed them if possible, but it was too late to replace them." On his Instagram page, the designer also revealed that proceeds from the tribute line will be going to the Kobe Bryant's Mamba and Mambacita Sports Foundation—but is it too little too late?
5. Fendi's size-inclusive runway
On a happier note, Fendi made history by including two plus-size models—Paloma Elsesser and Jill Kortleve—in their line-up. Paloma, who's also a body positivity advocate, took to Instagram to express her gratitude to the brand, saying "I would simply like to express my gratitude for this monumental moment. Thank you to everyone involved. For making me feel protected, safe, and seen. This means the world to me, but most importantly to those who have never seen themselves on a runway in Milan. Thank you. My heart is so damn full". Although having two plus-size girls in the 50-model line-up isn't exactly a huge leap towards size inclusivity, it's definitely a big step for Fendi (and Milan Fashion Week as a whole), and a small win for curvy models.
6. Moschino takes the cake
You can always count on Moschino to bring on the fun, and amidst the gloomy Covid-19 outbreak situation, it's greatly appreciated. Citing Marie Antoinette as his main source of inspiration this AW20, creative director Jeremy Scott reinterpreted the French flair in an array of exaggerated silhouettes, and included a number of confectionary-inspired looks to sweeten it up. Let them eat cake, and let them dress like it too.
7. Emilio Pucci x Christelle Kocher of Koché
A fashion week isn't complete without collaborations, and this season, Emilio Pucci tapped up-and-coming French designer Christelle Kocher of Koché to be its guest designer, and she didn't disappoint. The brand's logo and monogram were reinterpreted and given a spruce-me-up, plastered on modern separates including denim co-ords and sexy mini and slip dresses, pulled together with hints of her signature sportswear and jersey fabrics in the mix.