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Milan Fashion Week 2018
Designers feature urban street wear for millennials

  (News Agencies) With social and political crises unsettling the globe, Milan Fashion Week was all about slogans this season. “Time For Change” has been a particularly dominant catchphrase, one the fashion world can expect to see branded across sweatshirts, waistbands and accessories next fall and winter. The ubiquity of the expression does not necessarily denote consensus around the message it’s designed to convey. For some, it means back to roots. Others intend it as a call for respect. But the overall implication seems to be a rejection of the status quo, which really isn’t surprising in fashion.
Naturally, Miuccia Prada is the outlier. Prada eschewed words because they have become empty. Where they appeared on prints in her new looks, words were meaningless. The second day of Milan Fashion Week of mostly menswear previews for Fall-Winter 2018-19 opened with youthful designers focused on urban street wear that tries to capture the zeitgeist of Millennial consumers. Here are some highlights from Sunday’s shows, including Prada, Dirk Bikkembergs, MSGM and DSquared2:
Prada’s strange packages
In challenging times, it is not unusual to seek the familiar. For Miuccia Prada, there is comfort in black nylon. The designer generously employs her favoured material in her pieces for the next cold weather season, padding them and applying them in protective layers.
The boxy shapes for men and women appear to conceal the wearer in a unisex vein, but it is all for naught: Identity badges suggested a form of surveillance in the runway scenario. That sense of excessive control transforms into a political statement once the garments are on the rack and available to consumers. “I think we are in a moment when these aspects of control are very relevant,” the designer said after the show.
Despite the collection’s utilitarian nature creating a sort of uniform of anoraks, jackets, caps, straight trousers and skirts, Prada said she also wanted to convey elegance. Beyond the dystopian looks, she included tourist-grade short-sleeved knits, or wild print short-shirt combos for men, and slit-skirt suits in bright tones paired with open-toe heels and long leather gloves for women.
Prada enlisted architects to design new accessories, including a padded front pack that could stand in as a form of body amour, and a utility tool apron. Artists came up with the prints, including burning bananas and meaningless strings of words. “Now they no longer represent concepts, but they are pure decoration,” she said.
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