Upon hearing the name ‘Alberta Ferretti’ an image of maximalist Italian glamour may spring to mind. The designer has, after all, spent the last four decades building a reputation as a formidable creator of eveningwear—having crafted show-shopping red carpet gowns for everyone from Candice Swanepoel and Elsa Hosk to Lana Del Rey, Regina King, and Scarlett Johansson.
But Ferretti’s daywear is a creative force in and of itself—evidenced in her Fall 2021 collection, which debuted this afternoon and consisted largely of perfectly-crafted, impeccably-styled daytime looks. “I’m a woman designing for women,” she said in a post-show interview. “How could I not take their needs into consideration?” It’s true that now, more than ever, women are leaning on the bread-and-butter pieces of their wardrobe—great denim, wear-for-life coats, shrunken cashmere sweaters—and on that front, Ferretti delivered in droves.
While other brands have experimented with interactive video games and brooding short films, Ferretti kept her digital offering simple—streaming a traditional, 49-look runway show from a showspace in her native Milan. The opening look set the tone—a charcoal grey woollen cape worn over loose pleated trousers—for a show that skewed heavily toward practicality and wearability.
The opening look set the tone—a charcoal grey woollen cape worn over loose pleated trousers—for a show that skewed heavily toward practicality and wearability
Supple leather straight-leg trousers were zhushed up in a shade of moss green, high-waisted denim was elevated with a slight acid wash and quilted pockets and an ankle-skimming coat was given new dimensions courtesy of statement boxy shoulders. Pie crust collars made an unexpected appearance (perfect for Zoom), heavy woollen skirts were layered over heavy woollen trousers and there were a handful of statement belts affixed with gold-plated floral arrangements.
Each look was filled with the kind of perennially classic investment pieces you don’t mind handing your hard-earned dollars over for—clothes that aren’t reactive to our strange new world order, but independent from it. This is unsurprising, given that Ferretti has always taken her inspiration from the women she sees on the street. “My school is the world, and my teacher is the people,” she once said. “It is very important not to stay cloistered in the office if you want to create. We have to go out in society to understand how people live and dress in their real lives.”
Even when robbed of this ability for the better part of a year, her well-honed knack for crafting infinitely wearable clothing remains firmly intact. If this year didn’t shake it, nothing will.