MILAN, ITALY: A model saunters through the zig-zagging runway inside FENDI’s showroom on Via Solari today. Her dress – a sheer couple of layers of sandy-hued technical organza – is embroidered with a single floral motif and politely sits atop the iconic Fendi logo. The former, I am told, has been drawn from the FENDI archives and, along with the double-F logo which was first introduced in 2000, anchors the Italian luxuriate’s Spring/Summer 2023 collection. In other words, it is creative director Kim Jones’ way of looking to FENDI’s storied past – and Karl Lagerfeld’s distinct influence within it – to inform the future.
“It’s about continuity,” says Jones. “I am interested in looking at things that Karl has done, and seeing how we can develop them – both visually and technically.”
Enter a collection for the millennial – and a collision for the mind. A pop-infused injection that skews younger than we have seen from FENDI in years past, with the brand’s recognisable neutral palette interrupted by cornflower blues, parakeet greens, and vibrant pinks – all splayed across racerback dresses, ribbed crops, shearling tops, silky pants, jumpsuits, and skirts.
Textural juxtapositions were aplenty, too: Sleek satin – as you may be able to tell, there’s a lot of sleek satin – mixed with cashmere, fur, mesh and leather. But it was the elevated tennis shoes and F-wedged rubber platforms that had the hundreds-strong guests buzzing.
The shoes, and the bags. For all of the colour pops, the real stars of the FENDI season were the bags, clutched by models as they stormed down the heart-thumping runway with gusto, backed by a 90s piano-heavy soundtrack.
“At FENDI, everything comes from the conversation around the double F which makes us see things in couples,” reflects Silvia Venturini Fendi. “Even the bags become part of a family: big and small.”
Star guests included GRAZIA cover model Jourdan Dunn, House of the Dragon star Emily Carey and singer Lily Allen.
The show notes also open with a really beautiful quote from Jones I wanted to share: “What is particularly interesting to me about FENDI is exploring the notion of functional utility alongside femininity – because the Fendi women are strong women with full, busy lives.”
Form and function for a new era – with Karl ever present in every step.
Take a look at a few highlights below.