Giorgio Armani; What’s Going On?
Entitled Sabbia (which translates as “sand”) Giorgio Armani’s spring/summer show began with a short film directed by Paolo Sorrentino, in which we watched a young couple lying hand-in-hand on the beach. Indeed, the designer was to run with the beach theme throughout, from the floating shapes, to trailing fringing and barely-there skirts which felt as though they were moving with the tide.
The colour palette mirrored the natural shades of sand, shells, sea and sky, from the stony snakeskin prints to the patterns gliding across light, wispy layers of material.
Silhouettes were long and languid, drifting along the catwalk, displacing the air with a delicacy and grace reminiscent of softly flowing water or sand whispering beneath a breeze. Jackets were loose, paired with tapered cropped trousers.
Indeed, there were a great deal of variation around the jacket theme, from blazers to biker jackets, all teamed with those gorgeous materials in the form of shimmering skirts and impeccably tailored trousers.
The Armani penchant for smartly-tailored androgyny was also apparent in the trouser suits and structured coats, all of which were rendered in pale, clean neutrals.
Shoes were flat and laced, lending the otherwise sophisticated looks a fresh, contemporary feel.
Armani’s evening dresses were arguably the most lovely of the show, wrapped like water around the body, cascading to the floor in pleats and sheer, sparkling layers. However, the very final look was undoubtedly the triumph of the entire collection, glittering and bejewelled, a vision of beauty and glamour swathed in beads and finished with a sparkling bob. It was almost otherworldly, an outfit from the wardrobe of some ancient, exotic princess.
Wonderful bias draping evoked the sophistication and style of old Hollywood, whilst there was something of an Orientalist air about the crystals and paillettes which shimmered across fabrics like stars on water.
The placing of sparkling dresses over sheer, loose trousers was an interesting idea which added to that feeling that each and every one of these models was encased in some sort of sparkling ocean bubble.
The range of bags varied hugely, from classic handbags to big, boxy things and elegant little clutches. Some of the looks were accessorised with sunglasses and chunky necklaces which draped like rope around the neck.
It is a testament to Armani’s skill that he has remained a giant of the global fashion scene for so many years, and is constantly evolving with the times and creating clothes that all sorts of women would want to wear. An utterly monumental collection.