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As Milan Fashion week ends, we’re sharing details on the Fall/Winter 2021 collections from from Dsquared2, Max Mara, Sportmax, Sunnei, and Bally.
Dsquared2’s new co-ed collection is a visual ode to the diverse facets of creativity and style. When paired right, what may appear girly and shy can unapologetically erupt with flair and attitude. Bodysuits and dresses embroidered with poetry are met with sporty wide-legged pants trimmed at the ankle with elastic; hoodies with tiaras glisten with beads, layered with tailored skirts; and a shaggy coat in cashmere and wool atop checkered shirt jackets gear the girls up for the cooler months. Bralettes are worn over suit jackets, tights are topped with thick socks and open-toe heels, and turtlenecks cozy up under thin dresses. Fall/Winter 2021 also marks a collaboration for shoes with Patrick Cox—the footwear designer behind the Wannabe loafer of the ‘90s, and a teenage friend of the house’s designers. Reimagined for the new line is the iconic shoe, now heeled with a mini platform, as a high thigh boot, and as a lower ankle boot with a chunky heel and “D” hardware. Other glittery heels with buttoned straps, satin sandals with bows, and lace-up boot sandals appear playful and crafted, ready to take on the look.
In Max Mara’s collection notes, we learned that when Achille Maramotti established the brand in 1951, his sights were set on dressing “the wives of local notaries and doctors.” While his initial intentions were pure, those women rose to their own successes, and Maramotti—and his latest Max Mara fashions—went with them. Today, that woman is seen well-dressed, well-read, and well-traveled; perhaps the models in the show exude this energy well, in a sun-drenched white room with tall windows and flags that accentuate the brand’s name above them. Below, they’re protected by quality essentials like alpaca jackets, tailored suits, and sturdy shoes. Of course, her closet’s prized gem is the Max Mara coat—a longhaired camel layer that tops aran knits, graphic tartans, and shirts with velvet elbow patches. Additionally and in contrast, the brand’s Sportmax label gains inspiration from the dark features, boyish edge, and daring style of muses like Annie Lennox, Grace Jones, Lee Miller, Claude Cahun, Sinead O’Connor, and Josephine Baker. Pixie cuts, suits, skin-tight jumpsuits, and flounces of sheer fabric dress the brand’s mood board. In a dark room, illuminated by one sharp spotlight shining from the ground up, unlit crystal chandeliers hung from above as models took to the space to execute the brand’s sultry vision. One look in particular was a face-off for those that were left with just enough to the imagination—a sleeveless sheer black dress with panels of fabric over the chest, the bottom, and the trim of the shin. Paired for perfection, the look was complete with a pair of large sunglasses, bicep-high gloves, and strappy kitten heeled thong sandals that buckled around the ankle.
This season, Sunnei continues to break boundaries and experiment with the range of sophistication. The roots of the brand’s founders—Loris Messina and Simone Rizzo—are seen in tandem, offering both refined traits and a commercial line. Silhouettes may seem simple and stream-lined from afar, but up close, they give life to large puffed pockets, cutouts held by ruler-thin straps of fabric, platforms on shoes, and ruches on dresses that trail up the front of dresses. Bright with pops of color and stripes, and larger-than-life accessories, the new looks are seen in a film by the brand, beginning with a model crashing into the viewer’s screen for a playful start. This is a new move for the brand, which has long since been presenting its collections with virtually rendered models in a digital landscape. To break away from the norm that followed, Sunnei presents layered scenes via video that symbolize the in-the-screen moment time we’re living through, disoriented by characters, reflections, and connections. Fall/Winter 2021 supports the brand’s dedication to a “Made In Italy” approach, collaborating with Italian artist partners like the stylist Vittoria Cerciello, the photographer Alessio Bolzoni, No Text Azienda studio, and DJ Tocci.
Bally is bringing warmth to the winter season ahead with modern layers that reinterpret house classics. The Bally Stripe is raised with a bombé technique, the asymmetrical hardware is seen on footwear and accessories, and a monogram (created specifically for this year’s collection by the Swiss graphic studio Offshore) welcomes the signature B-Chain in an interlocked style reminiscent of a shoelace as a nod to the brand’s history as a shoemaker. The turn of seasons does not necessarily mean the turn of inspiration, either, as the brand stays true to its mountain heritage. Hiking boots with a new Grip sole (first produced by Bally in the 1940s) were inspired by climbing expeditions by the French explorer, Lionel Terray, and Switzerland’s very own, Raymond Lambert. With this focus, Bally brings the outdoors inside, and vice-versa, with garments like alpaca yarn and leather, and an earthy color palette of bone, ebony, and moss.