Milan FW 2012 shows

Milan has come and gone but after many scrupulous hours hunting down the latest, I have come up with some of my favorites. Today’s focus is all names ending in the letter “i” — tomorrow I move onto other vowels.

Starting off with Gucci, the romance quotient has returned in Frida Giannini’s collection charming the seductive, rather than sweet variety. A dark moody palette with dramatic brocades and jacquards, there was a massive amount of fur, silk, and leather. Rendering similarities to the language of YSL, there were plenty of capes, boxy structured jackets, velvet trenches, and knitted minks. Although dark and opulent, this collection was definitely on my radar.

From Gucci to Fendi, we see a continuation of  the dance, according to the show notes “of a fine interplay of  textures, colors, and fabrics.”  Lagerfeld kept the look quite polished and modern. Imagine the aura of the warrior princess— yet super feminine complete with girly girl Heidi braids. This show operated on multiple levels: pile on the layers, yet remain body-conscious. I was very intrigued by the Fendi furs.. notably the bibs worn under clothes. Those will be highly coveted come fall. Notice the structured enormous corset belts emphasizing the waist, and the oversize tufted arms, another continuing thread in many collections.

From one “i” to the next we go to Roberto Cavalli with a va-va voomi. The show started with a score of short, baby-doll bubble dresses, done in bright pink and green sequins with harness backs. There was the usual sparkle mixed with a wild mix of proportions. Some of my favorites? The boxy tops over long ball gowns, and drop -waist tunics worn under flared pants. Check out the many layers of peplum, mermaid tails, and parachute pants. A sense of humor?  A requirement. Dreamlike? Yes.

Now you can open your eyes to a little dose of  sober reality at Marni. As close to the notion of everyday conventional clothes you can get, Consuelo Castiglioni showed a tight un-formulaic line-up that included in classic Marni-style, boxy jackets with a drop-waist and utility pockets, lots of color-blocking in bold colors like graphic reds, baby blues, and nudes, and tiny floral prints. 1960′s mod with a hint of Eastern influences showed up on the menu– models were clad in bright shift dresses, trousers, and skirt suits, almost always topped with a boxy coat and cinched at the waist with wide leather belts. Textures like lacquered python, patent leathers and plaid furs prevailed. I’ve been contemplating growing out of the white tights thing but here they are paired with platform Mary Janes. Will you wear them?

There’s my “i” roundup for the moment. What are your favorites thus far? Tell me, tweet me, email me, your input. Up tomorrow, more focus on Milan and other critical vowels. Ciao and happy Friday!