Only a handful of seasons ago the Fendi menswear collections used to be shown in a presentation setting. Thus making it easier to lean in close, caress fabrics and marvel at the house’s impressive textile manipulations.
It is understandable why the brand now feels it’s time for this collection to show on a catwalk. The designs have become even more innovative, and there is a wider interest in what Silvia Venturini Fendi is doing with the men while Karl Lagerfeld focuses on the ladies. But oh, how this show cried out for a cocktail presentation.
How else could those who were not lucky enough to have a front row seat fully appreciate the exquisite chameleonesque clothing Fendi had crafted. No fabric was satisfied sitting in its allotted sartorial slot. Pinstripes were actually laser-cut three dimensional additions. What looked like corduroy was actually leather or sheepskin. While leather and suede melded into one on a bag, or the top of a wool sweater would finish in fur.
When Fendi wasn’t trying to fool her consumers with fabric switcharoos, she made more obvious pairings by patchworking different fabrics together. These pieces gave the show a grandfatherly ting that worked nicely against all of the modernity of the fabric manipulations.
If Fendi’s ultimate goal is to draw people in and keep them interested in the brand, then this menswear collection certainly did the trick.