The A-Z Of Fashion Month SS22
Just as we’ve finally figured out how to pronounce the word “phygital”, IRL shows returned with a bang for Spring/Summer 2022. Whilst some designers opted to remain off the runway, for most, the catwalk called and the industry clicked its heels - descending on New York, London, Milan and Paris once again to experience all the latest collections. A return-to-runway also means a return to reportage, so we asked Dominic Cadogan to give us an A-Z rundown of all the moments you might have missed....
A is for… Anniversary. For a handful of brands, the arrival of the Spring/Summer 2022 shows coincided with label landmarks; Simone Rocha celebrated 10 years of her brand, while Olivier Rousteing clocked in a decade at Balmain. It’ll be a while before either catches up with Gucci, who raised a toast to 100 years of fabulous fashion.
B is for… Bambi. Taking his obsession for the fawn to a new level, Burberry’s Riccardo Tisci sent models out at his latest show with drooping Bambi ears. The fantastical creations were dreamed up by make-up maestro Isamaya Ffrench, made from silicone for a lifelike look. Next season’s hottest accessory? We’re all ears.
C is for… Cameo. Another season of shows means more surprise runway appearances, and nobody had more than Balenciaga, whose collection was modelled by the likes of Elliot Page, Offset, Juergen Teller, Lewis Hamilton, Isabelle Huppert, and creative director himself Demna Gvasalia. At least we think so... the visage-obscuring final look could have hidden anybody.
D is for… Double. Not satisfied with putting on a single show, Prada went big for SS22, putting on simultaneous shows in both Milan and Shanghai. In the post-show notes, co-creative director Raf Simons shared that the idea was to bring together a global community.
F is for… Fendace. Officially SS22’s worst kept secret, when the bonanza eventually took place, it was an all-out party that saw Silvia Venturini and Kim Jones of Fendi trade archives with Donatella Versace. The crème de la crème of design deserves the same standard of model and the show didn’t disappoint, enlisting Kate Moss, Karen Elson, Amber Valetta, Kristen McMenamy, and Naomi Campbell as Fendace’s chosen faces.
G is for… Genealogy. Returning to Paris from South Africa, Thebe Magugu looked to his family for inspiration this season. Hosting an installation to display the collection, the designer chaired a roundtable featuring his relations as they reminisced over family photos and explored how these translated into new designs.
H is for… High Octane Glamour. If the SS22 collections are anything to go by, fashion is finished with comfort clothes. Drawn to anything that sparkles and shines, design magpies included Balmain, Ludovic de Saint Sernin, Richard Quinn, Versace, and Valentino who all turned the dial up to 110. Now all we need is another party like Dazed X Fashion East X Browns’ LFW bash.
I is for… Inclusivity. In the wake of last year’s push for more diversity in fashion, NYFW brought us a tiny bit closer to a representative runway with wheelchair-using models appearing on the runway at both Collina Strada and Moschino. Even more of this next season, please!
K is for… Knits, for summer. Hear us out - although it might not be the season for knitwear, designers including Alberta Ferretti and Collina Strada, went for weather-appropriate, dainty crocheted looks to get their fix.
L is for… Legs 11. Humble hosiery has been given an upgrade this season with David Koma adorning his single-leg versions with feathers and rhinestones, while Nensi Dojaka gave her sheer versions sexy cutouts and blooming tulle flowers. If statement tights aren’t quite your style, perhaps Molly Goddard’s striped socks offer an alternative in leggy luxury?
M is for… Midriff. SS22 might be the sexiest season ever (more on that shortly, but skip ahead to X if you’re impatient) so it’s no surprise that the stomach is getting its time in the sun. Whatever your size, Maximilian, Rejina Pyo, KNWLS, and Supriya Lele are making a case for the new erogenous zone.
N is for… Newness. In the form of Alberto Caliri, who made his debut as creative director at Missoni. After working for years as the right-hand of former designer Angela Missoni, Caliri took the brand in a completely new direction – it’s skimpy and sexy and we’re obsessed.
O is for… Openers. Any show’s opening look (and model wearing it) is a glimpse into the vision for the label that season. Pulling out the big guns, Versace enlisted Dua Lipa as the collection’s debut face. The singer appeared in not one, but two looks – a chic skirt suit held together with oversized safety pins and a slinky fuschia chainmail two-piece to close.
P is for… Poolside glamour. Bikinis, sarongs, and swimwear made a splash this season at the likes of Maximilian, Supriya Lele, and Chet Lo. At London Fashion Week, Rejina Pyo took the idea even more literally, holding her show at the London Aquatics Centre, with Olympic Team GB divers performing mesmerising routines whilst models paraded around the pool.
Q is for… Queens, of the drag variety. Rather than sashaying away, RuPaul’s Drag Race UK stars Bimini Bon Boulash and Tayce chose to saunter down Richard Quinn’s SS22 runway – appearing alongside fledgeling super Lila Moss.
R is for… Rainbow. A technicolour dream, the SS22 shows took a leaf out of Netflix’s colour grade book, amping up the saturation on every colour imaginable. From neons to pastels, monochromatic looks from Richard Quinn, Valentino, and Molly Goddard brought vivid intensity to the season’s pantone palette.
S is for… Simpsons. In an unexpected twist, your favourite cartoon family showed up at Paris Fashion Week, appearing in a short episode to coincide with the debut of Balenciaga’s SS22 collection. Featuring the citizens of Springfield in some of the brand’s most recognisable looks, Simpsonified versions of Demna Gvasalia and Anna Wintour also made an appearance.
T is for… Tower, Eiffel. Breathtaking show backdrops, we’ve missed you. With real life shows back in action, Saint Laurent returned to the iconic Parisian landmark where the show took place under its glittering lights.
U is for… Upcycling. Somehow, in the lead up to his SS22 show, Marni’s Francesco Risso managed to invite his 400 guests to attend the atelier for fittings. Creating one-of-a-kind garments out of recycled cotton, the striped looks mimicked the patterns and motifs from the collection.
V is for… Vault. Eschewing the runway, Gucci decided to celebrate its 100th anniversary by inviting a series of upcoming design talents – Ahluwalia, Bianca Saunders, Stefan Cooke, Collina Strada, and more – to sell their wares on its site. Still hungry for a show? The SS22 collection is set to debut in California sometime in the autumn.
W is for… Winner of the unofficial best shoe contest this season: LOEWE. Brilliantly surreal and inspired in part by 15th century Italian artist Jacopo Pontormo, Jonathan Anderson’s footwear was the star of the show – heels fashioned to look like birthday candles, bottles of nail polish, cracked eggs, and bars of soap. Shoe fiends will undoubtedly be banging down doors to get their hands on them.
X is for… X-Rated. Well, almost. Get ready to bare your skin next year because less is apparently more for SS22. From New York to Paris, brands in every city – Saint Laurent, Tom Ford, and Maximilian to name a few – sent models wearing very little down the runway. Prudes, beware!
Z is for… Zen. Our wish for everyone involved in fashion month: from designers, models, and editors to unsung heroes, drivers, dressers, and interns – even all of you watching from the comfort of your own homes - it’s now time to sit back, relax, and await the collections’ arrival at Browns in six months time... See you next season!
Words by Dominic Cadogan
Graphics by Axel Swan Maldini
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