Dsquared2, Fila, Pucci showcase sporty-chic winter wear in Milan
Sportswear featured prominently in Milan on Sunday. For next winter, a number of designers have given an elegant twist to sport apparel, cleverly blending its staples with urban looks ideal for day and evening wear. Like Dsquared2 with its alluring ice skaters, and Emilio Pucci with its vintage ski outfits, while sportswear label par excellence Fila, over a century old, presented a striking anniversary collection.
A quaintly retro caravan was the setting for Dsquared2’s presentation, the models throwing an impromptu party to a frenzied gypsy soundtrack. Scores of young women and men criss-crossed the cramped set dancing relentlessly to the music, flaunting flashy, dazzlingly flamboyant outfits, sparkling with glittering tiaras, crystal-encrusted hats, with charms and chains tinkling everywhere, and even gilets and Charleston-style dresses in silvery chain mail.
Designer duo Dean and Dan Caten blended with gusto glittering evening gowns, Canadian sportswear and outerwear, and urban outfits; all of them with an ironic nod to kitsch. Distressed jeans, flared trousers, lumberjack shirts and sweatshirts were adorned with pearls and rhinestones. A textural tweed suit with a pleated or a bubbly skirt, either in leather or nylon, was matched with a cute little quilted jacked or a yellow waxed top with a generous collar, as well as a ribbed, figure-hugging turtleneck sweater.
Sporty details found their way into lace bodysuits and embroidered dresses. An ice-skater's lamé tunic was worn with laced boots, evoking the skating rink. Slit shearling skirts were sprinkled with sequins. Thick sweaters and cardigans only partially conceal elegant underwear, and amusing jewellery was ubiquitous. Next winter's Dsquared2 girls, sporting vertiginous high-heeled boots and wedges, will be dressed in ultra-short outfits completed by woollen or lace tights and thick socks.
The pace was just as hectic at Fila, whose models stroll down a long, narrow tunnel in a futuristic strobe-lighted dance club, bopping to the frenetic sound of U.S. gangsta rap pioneer Schoolly D. Sportswear label Fila, founded in 1911 in the vicinity of Biella in Piedmont, Italy, is celebrating its 110th anniversary this year. For the occasion, Fila called on British designer Katie Grand, who revisited some of the most iconic items from the label's archives.
From t-shirts with oversize logos to zipped polos, tight-fitting ski suits and knitwear, swimming costumes, tank tops, tracksuits and mini shorts, the whole sportswear gamut has been reinterpreted by Grand in highly graphic style, focusing on six disciplines that are key for Fila (tennis, skiing, fitness, basketball, water and motor sports). Many outfits featured the red, navy and white colours typical of the Italian label, which was bought in 2007 by South Korean businessman Gene Yoon via the Fila Korea company, and is managed under licence in Europe by Dosenbach-Ochsner.
The label's name appears on a number of items, either discreetly as a micro-logo on a sleeve or collar, or more visibly in bold capital letters in Fila's highly recognisable navy and red font. Fila's Fall/Winter 2021-22 collection featured a series of essentials with a deliciously vintage feel alongside more sophisticated items, like the red jersey maxi skirt with drawstring and side-slits, seemingly cut out of a 1980s jogging outfit. For the occasion, Fila created a website dedicated to the 110th anniversary collection, highlighting the label's influence on sportswear style through its statement creations.
Against a candy pink backdrop, Emilio Pucci’s young skiers swayed to the beat of an electro-pop soundtrack, clad in tight-fitting jumpsuits in a palette of soft colours. They are entirely swathed in the jumpsuits’ recycled nylon fabric, from balaclava-covered head to high-heeled pumps.
The jumpsuits fitted like a second skin, and were worn under white or brightly-coloured maxi capes, quilted jackets, and even skirts, shorts or dresses. Another sportswear garment, the leotard, comes in mohair wool like a sweater, or in silk like a blouse.
The whole collection featured Emilio Pucci’s classic prints, drawn from the archives and refreshed for the occasion in a palette of ivory, yellow, orange pink, powder pink and petroleum. The garments were combined either in tone-or-tone sets or in a mix-and-match of patterns and hues. Emilio Pucci’s pretty collection also featured a few monochrome items, like the blue chiffon dress trimmed with plumes and crystals; the mat maroon tights; and the mauve vestal-style dress.
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