Emporio Armani Ready To Wear Fall Winter 2013 Milan
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Giorgio Armani wanted to make his message clear from the get go of the Emporio Armani show. He did this in the most straightforward of ways; he plastered the word Kajal across the backdrop of his catwalk and lit it up with a spotlight so that the sugar sweet color of each individual letter could be fully appreciated.

Those pastel colors defined this collection and helped give the show a girlish charm. Granted, pallid hues seem out of synch with what should have been a winter collection. But at this point not even the seasons hold any sway over maestro Armani. What did help balance the soft shades was the designer’s choice of silhouette.

He faultlessly constructed his clothing in rounded shapes that, when paired with bejeweled berets and bowler hats, had a 1920s vibe about them. But the way pants curved out and then tapered at the ankle, wrap skirts were cut with a tulip hemline, and exaggerated hourglass jackets and dresses all enveloped the body, there was a sense that even if the colors were light the clothing was sturdy.

This was also thanks in large part to Armani’s use of sponge neoprene that he bonded to velvet jewel-hued sculptural dresses and a myriad of other pieces in the collection. The oversized cotton-candy mohair outfits and those constructed in organza were other ways Armani was able to pump up the volume without ever getting lost in his chosen exaggerated feminine shape.

This was an endearing show that was rather directional for a designer who tends to keep his collections on the straight and narrow. It is nice to see Armani stretching, if ever so slightly, his style.

- Jessica Michault

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