In Milan, Gucci, Sunnei and Missoni bet on transformation

MILAN (AP) — Day three of Milan Fashion Week, mostly womenswear previews for next spring and summer, was all about transformation.

Sometimes interior transformation, like at Gucci, or brand transformation, like at Missoni. And sometimes it was about upping the style game, like at Sunnei.

Here are some highlights from Friday’s shows.

“TWINSBURG” BY GUCCI

Gucci creative director Alessandro Michele built a parallel universe on the catwalk with a surprise theatrical reveal.

For her Spring-Summer 2022-23 collection dubbed “Twinsburg,” Michele staged side-by-side shows inside the Gucci Hub, each unbeknownst to the other, until a wall came up. , revealing sets of identical-looking twins in one synchronic stride.

For the final walkthrough, the 68 pairs of twins met in the center, holding hands and coming together. It was so powerful that many in the audience were moved to tears.

“I was crying too. I don’t really know why,” Michele said backstage. “I don’t cry often but maybe it was appropriate for me to cry at the end because it was very intense.”

“There are times when I wonder why I do this? Someone is talking about nuclear war. Politics is a disaster. The situation on the planet is a disaster,” Michele added. “But as human beings, the only weapon we have is to imagine something else and make it happen.”

Michele said the show was an exploration of people’s inner selves and the idea that they harbor an inner twin that might hold them back or stimulate them.

His idea of ​​”the other” was shaped by an unusual family arrangement growing up believing he had two mothers: his biological mother and his twin sister. He called the two “mamma” because they raised their families in neighboring apartments because they couldn’t stand being apart, and didn’t begin to understand the difference until they were 7 years old. when her aunt died.

Michele said presenting her collection in duplicate gave more power to the garments, each of which was designed to the eclectic standard that Michele set with great global success.

They included a suit with trousers that appeared to be held up by garters revealing the upper thigh, a part of the male physique rarely revealed in formal attire. Quilted floral jackets and pants were a sexless affair. A magnificent silk-embroidered dress was pleated in the back with a trailing train.

The notion of an evil twin was represented on the catwalk by motifs from the 1980s film “Gremlins,” in which the creatures transform to become naughty. Appearing as stuffed accessories, patches and prints, the Gremlins were meant to emphasize “the fear of your evil self”, Michele said.

Michele flashed the word “Fuori!!!” on certain clothing as a tribute to an Italian organization for the defense of homosexual rights. Michele has spoken in the past about Italy’s failure to pass landmark legislation that would criminalize hate crimes against gays, women and people with disabilities, and he expressed concern over predictions that a party far-right could dominate Italy’s legislative elections on Sunday.

“The elections clearly show that freedoms are being eroded little by little,” he said.

SUNNEI’S ALTER EGO

The designers behind Milan sensation Sunnei toyed with the idea of ​​transformation, employing alter egos to Gucci’s twins.

Models dressed in what appeared to be street clothes descended from the bleachers and walked through a revolving door, through which another model returned with an updated look. Designers Loris Messina and Simone Rizzo seemed to be telling a young audience of hoodie-loving street dressers how to up their game, style-wise.

So one with a sleeveless sweatshirt and jeans turned into a green and blue striped shirt, worn with loose white shorts. A girl in a black T-shirt and jeans returned in a long royal blue coat with a white satin collar and cuffs. Khaki pants and a gray shirt disappeared behind the door, and out emerged a baggy anise green top with gathered pants, a sort of urban tracksuit.

MISSONI TRANSFORMED

Family-owned fashion house Missoni has taken a new turn with a new creative director, who has been digging through the archives for clues on how to make the brand’s fine knitwear relevant for a new generation.

A star-studded front row signaled the target audience: performer Paris Jackson, American actor Madison Bailey, model and social media influencer Maddie White and Brazilian model Alessandra Ambrosio.

Creative director Filippo Grazioli designed mini skirts with deep V-slits over bodysuits and sheer dresses with sequins over zigzag culottes.

The looks featured oversized zigzags as well as less familiar geometric patterns from the archives. The shoes of the season were Lucite wrap platform heels. The looks were completed with flat silver jewelry.

Not all pieces strictly adhered to Missoni’s knitting ethos, including sequin-studded ballet skirts and long sheer dresses, like the one Jackson wore with black-and-white zigzag culottes.

Marking the transition, Missoni employees took up half the seats in Bocconi’s underground atrium, while students at the Milan business school watched from above through floor-to-ceiling windows.

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