Milan Fashion Week promised a riveting journey. On the second day, Prada pushed that message with an audacious and intellectual collection, where sartorial brilliance took centre stage in an exquisite mingling of tradition and innovation. The creative duo formed by Miuccia Prada and Raf Simons presented a show that decodes expected disciplines, giving free rein to an architectural and fluid vision. Set inside the house’s famed Milanese Fondazione, Prada building, the runway was an industrial metal gridding as it was for the men, save the shift in colour from grey to feminine salmon pink. However, it was still divided by the same slippery, moving curtain – its continuous change in shape provided a visually mesmerizing backdrop to the sharply defined silhouettes. And so, delving deeper into the collection, it becomes evident that here is an exploration of Prada’s historical roots. The emphasis was distinctly on the evolution of Prada’s signature designs, capturing the nuances that set them apart in fashion. Similarities could be drawn from the men’s line with high waists and dramatic sleeve lengths defining the silhouette. Yet, intriguing was how these tailored garments broke away from convention, providing an intentional dissonance to traditional designs. The crux of this collection revolved around a uniquely tailored silhouette. This was characterized by a broad-shouldered jacket, seamlessly paired with high-rise shorts or pants tapering gracefully to the ankle. Interspersed amongst these tailored pieces were sheer printed scarves. These additions bridged the gap to another standout silhouette – the sleeveless shifts – crafted from the finest organza and gazar. They seemed to hover as they graced the runway juxtaposed against the fabulous oversized ‘barn’ jackets. The reimagined accessories of this collection played a prominent role in its storytelling. An iconic bag, a treasure from the Prada archives, designed by Mario Prada around 1913, was revived and reintroduced. While its origins lay in silk moiré, this season, it was reinterpreted in the luxurious feel of Nappa leather and sustainable re-nylon. The bag, more than a mere accessory, narrated a story – its hand-carved clasp, bearing the image of a mythological figure, captured the world’s fascination with Eastern artistic aesthetics from a bygone era. This reverence for the past was harmoniously juxtaposed with the present, evident in the array of sleek leather belts, and a diverse footwear palette ranging from sophisticated heels and flats to dapper brogues. The marriage of the past with a contemporary twist showcased a masterclass in design evolution.
THE BUZZWORDS Intelligent, Craftsmanship, Innovative, Complexity, Actuality
Look 13 At the collection’s heart was the embodiment of innovation and craftsmanship in one unforgettable ensemble. It was not just defined by the countless hours or hands involved but by the thrilling challenge of its conception. The outfit showcased two standout techniques: the printed fringe on floral shirts, providing an ever-changing depth to each bloom, and the metal fringe on skirts, meticulously constructed with the precision of fine jewelry.
THE ON-BRAND FACTOR
THE BRAND EVOLUTION
The collection underscored the historical significance of Prada’s designs and its ceaseless commitment to craftsmanship. There was an emphasized focus on the intricacies and complexities behind the scenes—acknowledging the hands that meticulously bring to life each embroidery, the dedication to techniques honed over time, and the unyielding passion for innovation that has consistently defined Prada. This season was a nod to the craftsmanship that has always been central to Prada’s ethos. The show’s direction highlighted signature design evolution—drawing parallels from the men’s line with its high waists and extended sleeve lengths. Yet, in the true spirit of Prada, the tailored garments showcased an intentional departure from the expected, crafting a narrative that both honored and defied tradition. Every piece seemed to whisper tales of Prada’s rich legacy while boldly stepping into an audacious future.
We did not want to philosophize or tell stories about clothing. For this collection, we wanted to focus on the work – on the methods, techniques, and value. There is respect for or craft as designers and for the act of creating clothes. The clothes speak for themselves. – Miuccia Prada
THE WRAP UP
Prada’s proclamation resonated deeply—it was about culture, clothing, valuing knowledge, and conscious decision-making. This wasn’t just another fashion show but an assertion of depth, challenging the superficiality that often clings to the fashion industry. As South Korea’s boy band Enhypen created a stir outside the venue, inside, the collection sent ripples of its own, voicing the profound intellectualism for which Prada is renowned. Several brands have chosen to stay within well-trodden paths in Milan Fashion Week, perhaps for security or the lure of ‘safe’ money. But juxtaposed against Prada’s audacious decisions, their caution becomes even more pronounced. While others recycle old trends, Prada leads the charge with fresh innovation. Their stance is unmistakable: in fashion, the brands that dare, win. In a time when many are merely ticking boxes, Prada is out there setting the agenda. It’s more than just design; it’s about pushing the boundaries and raising the bar. Prada drives the narrative of fearless creativity in fashion. Others need to learn from this team’s boldness. The show’s standing ovation was a testament to its transformative, distinctive essence. Prada doesn’t rest on past laurels; it reinvents, evolves, and consistently surprises. At its heart, fashion is about embracing culture, and Prada, with its rich heritage and innovative future, is undeniably at the forefront.