“We love the body of a woman. Coco Chanel was wrong when she said that men were unable to design for women. Women know too much about women and they transpose their needs onto women’s clothes” The idea of women power and women shapes is as good to Dolce and Gabbana as it is for us. In 1985, their first collection was shown in Milan and built their themes on screen sirens, Sicilian widows and a rosary of Catholic kitsch. Dolce and Gabbana are arguably the most powerful and influential designers of our time.
One of our favorite italian fashion designers, Miuccia Prada was once a member of the Italian Communist Party and a mime student. She was an unlikely entrepreneur when she took over her family’s luggage business in 1978. She first dazzled the fashion world in 1985 with a series of black nylon handbags and backpacks. Prada is now a billion-dollar company. Beginning with Prada’s first ready-to-wear collection in 1989, she established a techno minimalism based on pared-down design, innovative fabrics, and computer-enhanced patterns that have become influentially iconic.
"We saw the 'army' mood return, but in a more effortless and understated way than previous seasons. A utility and combat mood was a favorite in Milan, particularly from the likes of Prada and Miu Miu, who offered full army-inspired looks. I loved Isabel Marant’s oversized styles which similarly drew inspiration with oversized vests and pocket-detailed trousers. A favourite piece had to be Stella McCartney's full khaki green jumpsuit, which looks great with an oversized jacket in the same hue and a pair of pumps," says Hsu.
A designer with a notorious past, Christian Dior was also known for being in cahoots with the enemy during WWII, when he dressed Nazi wives and French collaborators in his designs. Despite this questionable choice, he still rose to prominence during the late-forties when the war was over…primarily due to his unparalleled mastery of line and shape. He gave women a desirable “flower silhouette” which always featured a nipped-in waist, a full, voluminous skirt, and a feminine, corseted bodice. Often, the hips of his suits and dresses were padded to balance the bust line and accentuate the wasp-waisted effect.
Known for his stunning couture designs and his sophisticated women’s tuxedo jackets (known as le smoking), Saint Laurent was destined to carve out his own identity, but his career was not without its challenges. After a poorly received collection at Dior, which featured hobble skirts and other unusual designs, he was sent into mandatory military service. The stress of being in the army (although he lasted only 20 days) took a tremendous toll on the sensitive designer. He suffered from teasing and hazing by his fellow soldiers, and he soon plunged into a nervous breakdown; he was sent to a mental hospital for treatment.
"Floral dresses are a wardrobe staple no matter the season, and for autumn, they were back and bigger than ever, referencing the '40s and an homage to swing dancing in particular, with midi lengths as the key shape from the likes of Dries Van Noten, Miu Miu and Erdem," says Hsu. "Alessandra Rich remains a key favourite when it comes to her feminine and wearable floral dresses, which offer the perfect desk to dinner outfit worn with heeled boots. Satin was also key fabric this season, with a mix of high-neck and V-neck iterations."
After working for Dior, Schiaparelli and Paquin, Pierre Cardin opened his fashion house in 1947. Initially designing costumes for stage productions, he launched his first women’s couture collection in 1953 and women’s ready-to-wear in 1959. Cardin’s company grew into an empire starting in the 1960s when he began licensing his name to a wide array of products outside of clothing.
A vibrant fashion style is reserved for the lady who wants to say “Hey, look at ME, world!” This energetic and intense fashion style typically features garments with wild patterns and exaggerated embroidery as well as asymmetrical designs and tons of colors. Most of her wardrobe will be lined with super light and pastel colors that draw the attention of everyone’s eyes, no matter where it’s worn.