One Editor’s Crash Course In Italian Style
Traveling to Europe for fashion month is a major highlight for an editor, and this season, I was fortunate enough to be sent to cover the collections in Milan. Complete with larger-than-life runway productions (Missoni’s pussy hat parade and Dolce & Gabbana’s over-the-top influencer party being two prime examples) and spectacular designer presentations—oh, and don’t think I went without healthy helpings of pizza, pasta and cannoli—the trip was a Milanese dream and a crash course in Italian glamour. Here, witness my journey firsthand.
Follow An Editor: Milan Fashion Week
Wearing a MSGM sweatshirt, H&M skirt, Alexander Wang bag and La Canadienne pumps.
Straight from the plane to Fendi's show, where Karl Lagerfeld sent a sea of red leather boots (seen in virtually every other collection in Milan) down the runway on the likes of Kendall Jenner and Bella and Gigi Hadid.
I arrive at my hotel post-Fendi and am greeted by invites galore. They're all so beautifully crafted and representative of each show and brand aesthetic. Fun fact: At New York Fashion Week, you can get access to shows with a barcode scan from an email, but in Milan invites are 100% required. I think it's a wonderful practice.
Next up is Furla's 90th anniversary presentation, in which they're celebrating handbag trends through the decades spanning the 20s through the 00s. This tortoise-shell flap was inspired by the '30s Jazz Age that fit on the brand's best-selling style called the Metropolis.
My first night in Milan ends with Prada's spectacular show. The set was like a teenage dream, as colorful furry beds, retro lamps and bedside tables resembled a teen's bedroom (and doubled as seats for some guests) and poster collages lined the walls of the industrial venue. The collection itself was equally dreamy, with multicolored ostrich feathers, fur, fringe, beads and more adorning Miuccia Prada's fantastical designs.
Etro set a transcending bohemian scene for its "Paisley Tribe," as streams of prayer flags crisscrossed over the multicolored carpet runway with Moroccan-style pillows to greet guests as they took their seats. Signature to the brand's aesthetic, show notes indicated a collection of "bright, feisty, active and energized" pieces and delivered everything from patchwork outerwear to shaggy knits to silky pajama-style separates.
Nineties influence ran wild at the Jimmy Choo presentation. The set, taking place in a gorgeous townhome, debuted new silhouettes from block-style kitten heels to metallic boots to printed handbags. This bathroom vignette was by far the most heavily Instagrammed of the day.
Heading To Lunch
After a morning at the Bottega Venetta show, a fellow editor and I made our way through the charming streets in Brera neighborhood before breaking for lunch at Bice. The iconic spot did not disappoint—my pesto gnocchi was unreal.
Next up was Missoni, where it was evident from the get-go that a political statement was about to be made. Walking into the venue, guests and staff were wearing pink pussy hats reminiscent of the Women's March, and when we took our seats, the show notes came fixed with branded beanies of our own. Models even wore the hats during the finale, followed by a speech by Angela Missoni stating, "In a time of uncertainty, there is a bond between us that can keep us strong and safe: the bond that unites those that respect the human rights of all. Let's show the world that the fashion community is united and fearless." It was an incredible experience.
Gianvito Rossi is one of my favorite shoe designers, and being able to actually meet Mr. Rossi at his presentation was a huge thrill. These white ankle boots were a major standout and a favorite of the designer, who says that stiletto boots are always a cool alternative to heels. And with white hugely trending in footwear, I was immediately drawn to these.
By the third day of my trip, it was evident how much Italian women (by way of the collections and It girls spotted on the street-style circuit) embrace color, print and pattern. There's a sexiness and kind of unabashed glamour to it that I find to be a welcome change to the minimalism that has dominated the industry as of late.
Dolce & Gabbana
The Dolce & Gabbana show was an incredible spectacle, with more than 100 models, influencers, family members, royals, children and even a teeny-tiny Chihuahua cast on Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana's runway. The message was clear: Dolce & Gabbana is inclusive, fun and here for everyone, whether that means wearing a sequin dress and tiara or Justin Bieber T-shirt and lace shorts. The front row didn't disappoint either, as Christie Brinkley, Pamela Anderson, Jamie Foxx and Lisa Rinna beamed proudly as their children walked in the show. Needless to say, this was one for the books.
In stark contrast to Dolce & Gabbana, Salvatore Ferragamo's show was incredibly refined. I loved the bold pops of color, like this structural purple leather skirt. The shoes by the brand's women’s footwear design director Paul Andrew were another major highlight.
My final meal in Milan—of course it had to be pizza (and cannoli for dessert!). Le Specialità is a quaint spot and yet the vibrancy of life here makes the simplest of meals all the more enjoyable, particularly in a cozy local setting.