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Gucci FW23

MFW FW23: Gucci, SUNNEI, Philipp Plein, and More

At the end of Milan Fashion Week, we’re looking back on the Fall/Winter 2023 debuts from Gucci, Philipp Plein, SUNNEI, Giada, and the United Colors of Benetton.

Gucci’s Fall/Winter 2023 collection followed a path of generational exchange, melding past and future in designs that represented the essence of the house and the influence of all its past designers and artisans. At once familiar and new, the collection embodied a different kind of feeling than the eclectic-cool ideas of its recently-departed creative director Alessandro Michele. Instead it imbued a more high-fashion aloofness that was still ultimately Gucci. The mood was set by archival designs from the 1990s and early 2000s, playing with pops of vibrant colors and the intermingling of different textures, patterns, shapes, and points of origin. The collection debuted at the house’s Milan space, arriving at a pea-green presentation hall by way of elevator.

Philipp Plein FW23 Courtesy of Philipp Plein.

Philipp Plein introduced its audience to “The Cyber Western World” during its Fall/Winter 2023 presentation in Milan. The looks were explained by the house as clothing for cyberpunk cowboys and cowgirls—Texas meets Los Angeles—and we must say, that sums it up perfectly. There were western motifs, shiny metallics and sequins, quilted denim and cowboy hats, rancher’s jackets, show-stopping dresses, and lively pops of orange and purple. Encompassing looks for both men and women, some of our favorite ensembles included a purple plaid set with a matching silver hat, purse, and boots, a metallic leather jacket with a cable knit sweater, cowboy boots, and padded leather pants, and a sparkly look featuring a plunging neck dress with a bejeweled snake and crystal-studded work gloves.

SUNNEI FW23 Courtesy of SUNNEI.

Accompanying the Fall/winter 2023 presentation of SUNNEI was a user guide detailing instructions to drop all preconceptions, forget perfection, welcome reality, and embrace the state of mind necessary for what was to come. An experience more than a runway show, the models made their way down an elevated catwalk before posing the ultimate show of trust when they allowed audience members to catch them, one by one, as they fell back into a sea of hands. While this moment of connection between brand and audience wasn’t one we’ll soon forget, the clothing on display was of noteworthy design, too. Playful, fresh, and a little off-beat, there were pieces like peach-colored knits with giant fuzzy yarn fringes, tall boots that laced up to the knees, patchwork denim outerwear with fraying seams, and a suite of pieces in rainbow checkerboard plaid.

Giada FW23 Courtesy of Giada.

A certain pureness of style that evolves with the most contemporary vision of femininity is the standard by which Giada imagines a new collection. In its fall/winter 2023 designs, the house honed in on light refractions and shadows and an exploration of smooth, curving sculptural shapes. White, black, beige, and a stone gray seen on cashmere, wool, metallic silk, and silky Nappa leather created a soft movement and an almost-liquid feeling among shapes like pleated pants with slightly flared ankles, blouses with gauzy overlays, and skirts and dresses made with generous amounts of gathered fabric. Looks we loved included a turtleneck with bell cuffs and a long white leather skirt with an understated pin with baubles at the waist, a blazer dress in gray that faded into a gradient silky skirt with white mule clogs, and a black and white ensemble featuring trousers and a blouse with a structured-shouldered collar and a delicate netting of abstract-pattern silk.

United Colors of Benetton FW23 Courtesy of United Colors of Benetton.

United Colors of Benetton reflected on its heritage, summing up its many parts into a collection of archetypes that focused on wearability and material. Zany in the best of ways, the clothing offered tension between its shapes and its decorations, to be described as either a staple wardrobe for the eccentric dresser or a collection of statement pieces for those who like to add a playful touch, all debuting within a mirrored set. Pink, green, lavender, and yellow made up prints and graphics aplenty, like enlarged polka dots, lips, stripes, and flowers, seen alongside decorative crochets, fluffy furs, and the occasional patent leather piece. Our favorite looks included an all-over-polka dot look featuring three different colors of the print on pieces of a skirt suit completed by orange Mary Jane heels and a scarf tied under the chin, a utility suit styled with a silver shearling jacket and matching gloves and shoes, and a pink and green look comprised of a collared dress, a graphic sweater, a biker leather, and thigh-high boots.

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