Show Report

Show Report: Giorgio Armani A/W 16 Womenswear

by Lucy Norris on 2 March 2016

Lucy Norris reports on the Giorgio Armani A/W 16 womenswear show.

Lucy Norris reports on the Giorgio Armani A/W 16 womenswear show.

Giorgio Armani was talking this season about 'a sophisticated, seductive, imaginary world.' The show opened with the sound of a female vocalist giving a rendition of Tainted Love. It was haunting, slightly melancholic - yet seductive. Isabella Rosselini's rendition of Blue Velvet came to mind. And strangely enough, today was about its twisted sister: black velvet. The show notes described black velvet as being the mysterious protagonist of the collection. There was a slight vampiric vibe, in a very cool ‘we live amongst you’ kinda way. The couples and mini entourages wearing long layers or dark knee length coats often included one woman - the only one to be shades. Tilda Swinton's character in Only Lovers Left Alive came to mind.

The show notes explained that Armani’s longtime love for black velvet has been because of its density, tactility - and for it being a fabric that 'plays with light and reflections like no other.' Concertina pleated tops saw plissé pleats of cream silk pop from between the thick matt sheen of velvet.  

Drawstring patch pockets added volume, whilst cocooned blanket coats and knitwear added an emotional handcrafted touch - and a counterpoint to rich velvet. A great coat was also playfully spray painted with flouro pink, coral, blue and black. Further spontaneous and craftsy juxtapositions to velvet arrived via rustic embroideries.

Loose silk PJ pants, tailored joggers, sporty bombers - worn with thigh-high split velvet skirts - and flats were all great ways to bring an ease to modern cocktail dressing. A musical box fairytale score opened up and twinkling sequinned dresses, velvet capes arrived. One cape slung and draped off kilter - in the timely Renaissance style - was a dramatic yet laid back high point. Black beading sparkled against the matt solidity of black velvet or the sheerness of chiffon. Gothic black velvet eventually even reached angelic beach shores, as Thousand island hues sparkled in contrasting beadwork of shell pink, pale blue and sand peach.  

This season, Giorgio Armani has said that looking at reality with a 'dreamy, emotional eye' is now not an option. It's 'mandatory.' The Godfather of classicism has spoken. Milan is officially signed up to romance.



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