Giorgio looked east this season at Emporio Armani in a colorful show, that felt like the designer was drawing breath after his epic couture weekend in Venice three weeks ago.
He began the month in the baroque city of the Doges and continued his busy runway month with Emporio staged inside his minimalist Tadao Ando-designer headquarters in south Milan.
Even at 89, Armani remains a huge draw. Thousands of teenagers milled outside the show space on Via Bergognone, while inside a slew of stars waited in his interior café.
Cara Delevingne – in an austere black velvet dress – sat beside fellow thesp Nicolas Maupas; showgal and ex-girlfriend of George Clooney Elisabetta Canalis chilled with Japanese supergroup INI and their three singers Hiroto, Shogo and Rihito. And this being Italy, two soccer stars from AC Milan, Rafael Leao and Pierre Kalulu looked very content in the front row.
Giorgio’s big idea this season was iridescence, used in some great light jackets, silk double breasted looks or slimline blazers in shades of pearl, ecru and silvery metallic gray. Pants were cut forgivingly with reverse pleats and the cast wore flats or light-weight mesh boots. Many carried beach and shopping totes bearing the logo Emporio Armani Milano 1981.
For evening he changed gears with plum, violet and lapis lazuli chiffon dresses and full skirts worn with sequined tops and scarves – for a Moorish moment, backed up by a soundtrack that evoked the Atlas Mountains – led by Only With You from Hiss Band.
No wonder, Armani christened this collection ‘Like a Breeze’, it all felt so effortless.
“Summer as a condition of the spirit: lightness of thought and desire to dress with hints of elsewhere, as though picked up along a journey,” mused Armani in his program notes. And no designer, living today has such a lengthy voyage as the octogenarian Giorgio.
At the finale, Giorgio sent out a dozen models in a phalanx, before taking his place at their center, holding the hands of the two closest up in triumph. The audience rising in a standing ovation.
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