For the last two seasons Miuccia Prada has been playing with our notions of luxury, taking the everyday and the ordinary and making us reconsider it and then want it. Last season this focused on basics, but for S/S 14 she took simple palm prints and Hawaiian pinup girls - the kind of common graphics you see on adverts for foreign motels or on the menus of beach restaurants - and made them feel unique, forward-thinking and beautiful. This was a dark view of paradise, one that questioned the simplicity and wholesomeness of those tropical images, while drawing us into that world of sunsets and cocktails.
After the purity of her last two menswear offerings, Prada had brought back a print. This decorated everything from shirts to silky bombers and suitcases. There was a sense of travelling back to some fifties resort, where girls teamed their sunday best with activity-appropriate flat plimsoll shoes, socks and handfuls of sparkling bracelets, purchased from local vendors, while boys wore full-cut trousers, retro polos and tourist jumpers printed with postcard imagery. The colour palette was one of the most striking aspects of the collection, signature Prada with that navy, brown and burgundy, but given extra punch thanks to the inclusion of deep mango yellow and teal. These hues gave the collection an antique vibe, which was echoed by knitwear prints that could have been lifted straight from dusty hotel carpets. Despite the obvious beauty of individual pieces, every look seemed to suggest the sinister secrets and unspoken issues that frequent any place of beauty. This was a resort where something difficult or dark had happened - an event that was easy to forget or forgive when surrounded by such bewitching settings.
This was an astounding collection. It riffed on the theme of travel (there was even a soundtrack of helicopters) we so often see explored by heritage luxury houses, but gave us something new and challenging, with just enough emotion and punch for it to feel like a classic Prada collection. Like all good holidays, you just didn't want it to end.