July 24, 2021

Giorgio Armani, between return to sources and lightness

The master of Italian fashion Giorgio Armani, 86, made his return to his roots on Monday, June 21, with a highly anticipated men’s collection, combining freedom of movement and extreme elegance, the highlight of Milan Fashion Week.

>> Milan: men’s fashion is finding its audience … or almost
>> How has COVID-19 affected the fashion industry?
>> In a factory in Aisne, 40 bottles of perfume per minute

Giorgio Armani (right) and his historic collaborator Leonardo Dell’Orco at the end of the brand’s fashion show in Milan on June 21.

Photo: AFP / VNA / CVN

Far from the fashion-spectacle that the stylist has always refused, the models paraded in a green and intimate setting, within its historic headquarters in via Borgonuovo, very close to the fashion district. Smiling, still tanned, white hair and blue eyes, the veteran of Italian fashion, on the arm of his longtime collaborator Leonardo dell’Orco, was warmly applauded at the end of the parade.

The Italian luxury house was the first to announce the return to the public at the end of May, after being the first to give up in February 2020, at the start of the pandemic that hit the country head-on. This spring-summer 2022 collection entitled “Back to where it all began”, therefore via Borgonuovo 21, and presented during two successive parades, asserts the classicism of the label, while revisiting it by injecting it with a touch of lightness.

“My new collection reflects my post-pandemic state of mind: it is very classic in a way, but also informal and relaxed”, commented Giorgio Armani in front of a few journalists at the end of the parade. “And of course, I wanted the collection to carry my trademark, a certain effortless elegance.”

Revisited costume

The traditional costume is dusted, sometimes refined sometimes nonchalant, with waistcoat-jacket sets worn over Bermuda shorts or wide pleated pants, matched with Mandarin collar shirts or geometric patterned tops. The deconstructed and unlined jacket, the emblem of the brand since its founding in 1975, was also in the spotlight, dandy or sporty style. The silhouette of the Armani man is supple and sophisticated, the cuts are refined and the materials fluid, as in weightlessness.

The maestro collection gives pride of place to cotton, linen, silk and even satin. The color palette ranges from omnipresent blue to sandy beige through off-white without neglecting black, Giorgio Armani’s favorite color. Touches of red and green are reminiscent of the colors found in nature, a recurring trend during Milan Fashion Week.

The presentation of Giorgio Armani’s spring-summer 2022 collection in Milan on June 21.

Photo: AFP / VNA / CVN

Armani was the last of the three heavyweights to organize physical parades in Milan, after the festival of light offered on Saturday June 19 by Dolce & Gabbana at the Metropol, a former cinema that has become the brand’s headquarters, and the Etro show, which Sunday, June 20 transformed disused railways into a footbridge. The vast majority of brands present in Milan have chosen to distribute recorded presentations or short films on their own communication channels or on social networks.

“Immerse yourself in nature”

The Prada house thus opted for a virtual parade on Sunday which sees the models wandering in an oppressive tunnel before disembarking on a sunny beach in Sardinia, a symbol of the freedom found after dark periods of confinement. “To immerse yourself in nature, to go to the beach, is synonymous with freedom. It is utopian. It is really a primary need, but it is also an intellectual need”, commente the stylist Miuccia Prada.

With her co-creative director Raf Simons, the stylist brings up to date the wearing of ultra-short shorts, available to infinity, plain, striped or printed, loose or close to the body, sometimes rolled up, as a basis for an accumulation of successive strata. Combine at will, with sartorial-cut blazers, colorful tank tops, calfskin jackets or classic waxed raincoats.

The essential accessory, the bob with integrated mini-pouch, gives touches of pistachio green, mustard yellow or azure blue to a collection dominated by black and white. The clothes are simple, the materials flexible such as light mohair, batiste and poplin. For Raf Simons, this spring-summer 2022 collection is “very pure”, “practical”, more “always elegant”. The presentation of the collections in Milan ends Tuesday, June 22 at noon before this small world moves to Paris, for men’s fashion and then the haute couture shows.