Fendi Spring/Summer 2016 Milan

On what appeared to be a rain-slick gravel runway, designer Silvia Venturini Fendi sent out a menswear collection that was just as deceptively cool.

Where the catwalk was coated in a polymer that gave the effect of glassy water pooling on bumpy asphalt, the clothing used precious materials and state of the art fabrication techniques in combinations that were trying hard to look casual. But it just couldn’t help from screaming its sophistication.

How else could you describe python coats that shaded into a color treated rubberized texture two-thirds of the way down? Then there were all the traditional short sleeve roomy t-shirts that just happened to be developed out of liquid looking metallic fabrics. Those gave off some serious high class urban attitude, just like the elastic waistband sweatpants in the show. In the Fendi universe, sweatpants can only exist in supple black leather. And as for sun visors, well you can have them in any material you like as long as its python.

Fendi shows are always quite impressive in terms of the craftsmanship displayed in the collections. And it is understandable why the house would want to cater to the urban market and offer up pieces that felt younger and more approachable. However, it was almost as if the collection was a wolf dressed up in sheep’s clothing.

Fendi can try and dilute its power in simple silhouettes and modest concepts. But this is an Italian brand that can only stifle its howl for so long.


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