Milan Meets the Modern Woman

As Milan Fashion Week S/S 2019 comes to a close, we are left with ‘80s silhouettes, utility and sportswear, diversity among fashion models, and a lot of neutral tones.

After every fashion week, we re-evaluate what was shown and then ultimately choose a theme that was strongly represented throughout the week. For Italian designers in Milan, this meant dressing the everyday working woman. This shined through as pleated skirts strutted the runway in browns and beiges, leaving audiences feeling comforted.

Prada’s collection included looks that represented a challenge women face all the time: whether they should dress how they like or how other people expect them to dress, the battle between freedom and conservatism. This conflict was shown through modest A-line dresses that featured obscure, large cut-outs and plunging necklines.

According to a Vogue article, “If Burberry owns one of the two most famous coats in the world, Max Mara owns the other.” This brand is so well-known for its outerwear, it is easy to identify as soon as the models are in action. However, this time around, Creative Director of Max Mara, Ian Griffiths, tapped into the ‘80s archives. These important documents were recreated into light-weight, trench-like coats with broad shoulders and ruffle detailing. The coats ranged in neutral toned colors along with an added yellow look for contrast.

Versace showed up with its usual vibrant patterns and mini-dress sex appeal but also included something that was not expected—models of all different age groups. High-fashion models such as the Hadid sisters joined the stage with 44-year-old supermodel, Shalom Harlow.

20-year-old LIM junior, Emma Trivunovic, loved the shows from Milan Fashion Week because she believes the city is a major influence when it comes to culture and fashion. She was impressed by what Donatella Versace brought to the table.

“I think representation of women and different skin colors and backgrounds is important, and people notice,” Emma said. “People noticed how long into the Celine show it took Hedi [Slimane] to use a non-white model.”

For Emma, this means that people and consumers are going to continue on noticing the lack of representation of women. This, in turn, will lead to more diversity and equality in the fashion industry.

Moschino poked fun at the fast-fashion industry with an “unfinished” collection of sketched tights and stark ‘80s silhouettes. Hats and shoulder pads also accompanied models on the runway. The classic blues, yellows, and reds were splashed onto these pieces along with contrasted black-and-whites to make it seem these were sketched out of designer Jeremy Scott’s sketchbook.

Italian designers did not hold back this fashion week by creating collections that reflect the current social climate. Not only did they make a statement, but they also capitalized on femme empowerment and identity. I predict that Milan Fashion Week S/S 2019 is a glimpse into the future collision between fashion and equal representation.

All Images: Vogue Runway