BLAME Alessandro Michele, but bohemia is in the Milan air. It’s more than in the air – it’s in the seams, the embroidery, the applique, and the prints of more or less every designer in the Italian fashion capital, such is the Gucci designer’s hype and influence now. What once might have just been nods to folk and eclecticism have become the backbone to collections – butterflies and flowers grow from every frock; there’s a distinctly free-spirit type of fashion we’re seeing now. We saw it explored and celebrated to the max in London too. The bohemian bug has bitten – but it runs the gamut of fashion groupie just as much as it does flower child and Parisian artiste. Fun! Which brand of Milan bohemia are you? There’s only one way to find out.
The Original Bohemian
Of course, this title belongs to Gucci. It was Alessandro Michele that spearheaded this movement of renewed femininity, of dressing up. Applique embroidery and prints came in much the same way as we had seen before, net-accented pillbox hats and Forties opera jackets over a sweeping folk dress, some geek-chic glasses in there too. It was about piling it on, putting on that extra accessory (going against that old adage to take off the last thing you put on) and creating a character enamoured with the dressing-up box and vintage charm. Is this you?
Alberta Ferretti is adept at doing a wafty-wispy dress that floats down the catwalk. Lace-trimmed and with a boudoir feel about them, they took that popular Gucci notion but transposed it into a Ferretti fairy tale of froth and whimsy. This was about being sultry over quirky. Geek-chic specs should be left home, but a fluffy stole should be added for Norma Desmond Hollywood grandeur (another recurring theme this Milan Fashion Week). Sound familiar?
Nothing says being bohemian more than being with the band – and if that’s your fashion spirit, you’ll find yourself happily among the Roberto Cavalli set. Peter Dundas, now in his second season, had got into a rhythm: this was a wardrobe that played to his rock ‘n’ roll strengths, based in the Sixties-Seventies and finding favour with that whole music-cool vibe that Hedi Slimane so finds favour with. What you’ll need? A skinny scarf (rummage far back enough in your wardrobe and you might have one left over from the millennium), a velvet jacket, a wispy prairie dress, splashes of brocade, patchwork, and some serious kohl-rimmed eyes. The only other accessory, of course, is a band boy. And a tour bus. How many of these do you already have?
VIDEO | FENDI READY TO WEAR FALL WINTER 2016 MILAN
VIDEO | FENDI READY TO WEAR FALL WINTER 2016 MILANPosted by Nowfashion.com on Thursday, February 25, 2016
They undulated from bib-fronts and collars, and ankles, and shoes, and bag handles at Fendi. There was a surprising cutesy feel to the collection, so many ripples here and there they appeared like squirty cream folds. Exotic florals and brocades further explored the bohemian magic, something the house can do just as well as its more serious offerings. Karl is perhaps the ultimate bohemian, after all. Is he your hero?
Goth meets grunge meets glam: Yes, there is such a thing – in the hands of Alessandro Dell’Acqua at No 21, who added a new layer of sparkle to an otherwise sombre subcultural style. He beautified stompy-clompy looks that came with a tantrum in tow; he made dainty and utilitarian synonyms for his masculine and feminine aesthetic and he gave us great shoes and great reasons to wear tights once more – bejewelled as they were. It was about a state of undress in styling, something we’ve been seeing ever since New York – well, ever since Vetements frankly – but which is very much in the fashion vocabulary right now and something that has in fact always been a hallmark of Dell’Acqua. Magpie in mood, this kind of bohemia is about being a tomboy who isn’t afraid of brooches. How many do you own?
VIDEO | FRANCESCO SCOGNAMIGLIO READY TO WEAR FALL WINTER 2016 ...
VIDEO | FRANCESCO SCOGNAMIGLIO READY TO WEAR FALL WINTER 2016 MILANPosted by Nowfashion.com on Friday, February 26, 2016
For frothy romance of the boho Tess of the d’Urbervilles type, Francesco Scognamiglio seduces in sheer and softness, lengths of lace, and ribbon – deconstructed frills and florals for dresses that unravelled down and around the body. It was soft and sweet but sexy too, satin socks and mules with boudoir appeal. The latter, again making a nod to lounging around circa old-school Hollywood. Does that appeal to you?
The final question: which brand of bohemia are you?