Prada mixes nostalgia and grunge for summer 2023 menswear

MILAN (AP) — Reconciling unusually high temperatures with next summer’s looks on the runways at Milan Fashion Week becomes an exercise in cognitive dissonance.

While giving a nod to sustainability, the designers nonetheless come up with looks that don’t sit well with longer summer heat waves, and instead seem to focus on customers who live in northern climates, who can relying on cool evenings or air conditioning, or that just doesn’t do I don’t care.

Some highlights from Sunday’s predominantly men’s preview for Spring/Summer 2023:

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PRADA’S VICHY NOSTALGIA


The Miuccia Prada-Raf Simons collaboration at Prada has been a proven success, generating recognizable pieces that command attention and brand recognition from a distance. It’s quite an achievement for the co-creators who have joined forces just as the pandemic has locked the globe, and hasn’t quite loosened its grip.

The silhouette for next spring and summer is studied and refined, another easy to read. It all started with lapelless suits with hidden buttons, from skinny tapered pants to pointy boots. The pair introduced boyish notes with ribbed or color-block striped knits. Oversized bags helped create a sense of childhood, playing with adult things, while mannequins walked through a paper model of an out-of-scale house.

The nostalgia comes in the form of oversized gingham, reminiscent of a kitchen tablecloth, traditionally reserved for women, playing against grunge leather: cropped sleeveless sets and trench coats, sometimes with a layered gingham trench coat.

Questions persist: what is a summer wardrobe like? Where exactly is this summer?

But judging by fashionistas who wear knit turtlenecks and leather coats, the question may not be relevant when it comes to Prada.

Backstage, Prada welcomed guests including Jake Gyllenhaal, Jeff Goldblum and Rami Malek, herself dressed in a gray cashmere short-sleeved sweater and organza sheath skirt.

“Fashion as a manner, manner and means of appearing,” the designers said in the show notes. “An expression of choice.”

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MOSCHINO BRINGS MEN’S CLOTHING TO MILAN

Jeremy Scott set Moschino’s quirky tone with a scribble, before exploding trompe l’oiel full of graphic inspirations from the late American artist Tony Viramontes.

It was Moschino’s first all-male show in Milan.

Scott said he wanted to “shed some light on this brilliant designer” described in the fashion notes as “a vivacious chameleon, tinged with bright, pop colors.”

A grimacing face on a two-tone jacket set the pop art tone, followed by scribbles painted on pants and lapels, morphing into graphic polka dot prints and photographic details that recreate the look of wrinkles and creases on clothing .

The Moschino silhouette for Spring ’23 has a punk-militaristic vibe that defies gender norms in a way that’s increasingly common on luxury runways.

Pleated aprons are worn over shorts or trousers, in front or behind, for a skirt effect.

But there’s no reason to stop there, as Scott also designs punk pleated skirts and longer straight skirts for men. These looks aren’t entirely feminine, worn with military-style jackets and caps as well as combat boots, not to be understated by faces made up to coal-eye makeup.

Scott greeted the track in an olive kilt with a t-shirt that read “Misfits” on the front and “EARTH AD” on the back.

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‘REALITY BITES’ BY SIMON CRACKER

Designers Filippo Biraghi and Simone Botte took a radical turn during the pandemic and dedicated the Simon Cracker brand they founded in 2010 entirely to recycled materials.

Designers collect unclaimed clothing from laundries and textile scraps from producers, to create one-of-a-kind designs for their growing clientele, known as the Cracker Crew. Source material includes old cotton and linen sheets, men’s shirts, old parachutes, discarded yarns for new knits, and recycled jersey.

The collection for Spring-Summer 2023 was titled “Reality Bites”, from the 1990s Gen-X film, but more aptly a reference to the state of the world, and more specifically to the difficulties that the rising brand has been experiencing recently.

“We are living in a difficult time,” Biraghi said backstage. “‘Reality Bites’ is a bit of our experience right now.”

They described the collection as a cross between Holly Hobby and the Sex Pistols, encapsulated by ruffled punk accents. The looks were decorated with naive embroidery, tiny patches or childish doodles.

“It’s like clothes are born beautiful and then bitten,” Botte said.

The models were people from their Cracker Crew, encapsulating different body types and attitudes.

An older male model wearing high waisted knit pants, with a red ribbon accent and a deconstructed jacket with a flowing orange silk panel moved in a trance dance on the runway, while a woman in a corset on a layered skirt of discarded menswear shirts carried a miniature dog.

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