Milan Fashion Week is where the new-season trends are cemented and this autumn/winter 2018, Italian luxury houses gave us major commercial looks such as power tailoring, sports-luxe outerwear and logo-mania. Here store buyers discuss their favourite collections
Several buying directors from Europe’s top department stores named Gucci, Prada, Etro, Marni, Max Mara and Moncler as their key influential collections. In addition, logo-mania returns for them via brands such as Fendi, Prada, Versace and Dolce & Gabbana. The trend for 1980s and 90s redux was cited as an overarching theme for the autumn/winter season ahead.
Tech and sports-tech looks were the dominant and most commercial takeaway from Milan. ‘This is a supersonic season of outerwear celebrating the rise and rise of the puffer and ski coat,’ says Adam Kelly, buying and merchandising director at Fenwick of Bond Street. Mixed-media fabrics, prints, patterns, embellishments and multiple layering indicated a new mood where ‘more is more’, according to Coco Chan, Stylebop.com’s head of womenswear.
Statement and iconic seasonal must-haves were on all the buyers’ wish lists, from Prada’s flame sandals and neon pouches to Fendi’s logo trench, Gucci’s crystal cage sneakers and Max Mara’s check tailored jackets. As luxury houses increasingly turn to limited-edition and regionally exclusive pieces, watch how the big Italian luxury brands are turning these must-haves into instant heritage pieces for a new generation of collectors.
Adam Kelly, buying and merchandising director, Fenwick
Favourite collections: Sportmax with its retro ski and sportswear influences was a super modern collection. Etro offered the ultimate in contemporary hippie luxe. Max Mara was pure power dressing: a new-wave street edge, fringed sleeves styled with leopard print on tailoring and evening pieces all set against a Bladerunner-style sharpness.
Top trends: Tech and sports-tech as seen at brands such as Prada, Sportmax and Albino Teodoro. Outerwear is one of the biggest overarching trends. This is a supersonic season of outerwear celebrating the rise and rise of the puffer and ski coat. Retro and vintage styling and statement pieces continue to be a strong rhythm in Milan especially at Etro and Missoni, with an otherworldly spin on this at Gucci.‘Nomadic bohemia’ was great when presented by Etro with fringing and the influence of Paul Poiret’s designs for the Ballet Russes, set to a more commercial backdrop of a muted South American colour palette.
Key pieces: Outerwear is super tech shiny. Dresses are sensuous and slender in silhouette. Boots are cowboy heavy and robust, with techno treatments on heels, slides and Oxford details. The moon boot and sneaker trend is still raging hard, but this season we see this from all corners in Milan.
Elizabeth von der Goltz, global buying director, Net-a-Porter
Favourite collections: Gucci, Prada, Fendi, Philosophy and Marni, plus the Moncler Genius collaborations – especially Simone Rocha x Noir – and Giuliva Heritage, a new collection to watch from Rome, which offers authentic men’s tailoring and fabrics but made for women.
Top trends: 80s at Attico and Philosophy, where it was a little ironic and fun. Menswear tailoring and fabrications still reign, seen at Fendi and Gucci. Statement sneakers: for example, crystal caged at Gucci and neon sock-style at Prada.
Key pieces: Fendi logo trench coat, neon nylon pouch from Prada, white croc-print leather boots at Attico and the electric blue patent leather coat at Marni.
Sebla Devidas, women’s buying director, Beymen, Turkey
Favourite collections: Etro and Dolce & Gabbana.
Top trends: New ethnic looks created by the combination of shearling and suede with embroideries, chunky knits and ruffles; the mix of tartan, houndstooth and checks; sartorial details with luxurious and oversize coats.
Key pieces: Outerwear: an oversized, unconstructed coat with fur or fringe detail, ponchos or capes.
Ida Petersson, women’s buying director, Browns Fashion
Favourite collections: Prada, Versace, Fendi and Attico.
Top trends: Neon and bright colours, checks everywhere from top to toe, patent leather or high-shine outerwear and sharp tweeds, check tailoring.
Key pieces: Prada’s flame sandals.
Natalie Kingham, fashion and buying director, Matchesfashion.com
Favourite collections: Gucci, Fendi and Marni.
Top trends: Pleated skirts and balaclavas. Headwear is a focus for accessories this season.
Key pieces: Gucci trainers and anything leopard print.
Riccardo Tortato, fashion director, Tsum, Moscow
Favourite collections: Marni, Tod’s, Fendi, Gucci and Bottega Veneta.
Top trends: Colours.
Key pieces: Fendi’s cowboy boots and Versace’s Chain Reaction sneakers.