The catwalk at today’s A/W 16 Marni runway show - the brand abandoned their usual presentations in favour of a full-blown catwalk event after their A/W 15 Pitti success - was grey marble with a wonky double stripe white tape line, running off-kilter down the centre. What an apt motif for a collection that was about subverting and modernising tradition. Marni does kook-dressing better than anyone else. Surprise, wit and awkwardness are pervasive in Consuelo Castiglioni’s womenswear, but can be more subtle in her menswear, which tends to be cleaner and neater; obedient rather than boisterous. For A/W 16 it felt like she’d let loose a little - again apt, given that movement and ease were key starting points in her thinking for this collection. So a suit was disrupted by a haphazardly placed castorino scarf cutting across it. Elsewhere a pocket seemed to be sliding its way down a jacket, while neat blazers came with surprise white buttons, interrupting otherwise monochrome pieces.
‘Movement’ translated as increased volume. Trousers came oversized, puddling over a neatly fitted cuff at the ankle. Shirts were gathered at the throat, spilling out around the torso. They nodded to the focus on gender fluidity that’s overtaking the runways, even in the usually conservative Milan, thanks to Gucci’s new golden boy Alessandro Michele. But Marni works best when it's boyish rather than androgynous. Castiglioni seems to be aware of this, hence why she’d kept the ‘effeminate’ details, such as floral prints, relatively subtle and scarce. The strongest looks were those that toyed with the traditional pillars of masculine dressing - the warped shirts, that hung longer at the front than the back, and the coats that enveloped the frame softly rather than fastening stiffly at the front. The stand out piece was a simple white shirt that wrapped asymmetrically across the body, seemingly held by magic, (or if you looked closely, an ever-so discreet button). The unremarkable, made remarkable.