Leaving the structured Pitti Uomo events at the grand Fortezza and heading down the street to Dogona for the Pitti W Preview, is like stepping into a resort fantasy. Not only is it a switch from masculine to feminine lines, it’s also a whimsical transformation into a land of sheer and wafty fabrics, bright and sparkling embellishments and embroidery, jewels and pearls. The entrance to the pavilion showcases part of the Tudo e Brazil exhibit at Pitti Immagine this week, an adventure into the tropical designs inspired by Brazilian flavors. The specially-made dresses displayed by a wide array of designers are fanciful and fun, with patterns that immediately transport the visitor to vibrant South America. My favorite was a long chiffon dress with a ruched bodice, white with a delicate goldfish pattern.
Inside the Pitti W pavilion are hundreds of designers, previewing their looks for Spring and Summer 2011. Among the many trends I saw, the most prevalent were:
1. BOLD COLORS! Especially orange and yellow, chartreuse and magenta. Think bubbly and vivacious tones – Roberto Avolio used Veuve Cliquot oranges and bumblebee yellows in thick wool colorblocking, and Un Dimanche a Venise took a similar route but with more silk and lighter fabrics. Chacok le Studio used greens and pinks that were reminiscent of Lilly Pulitzer … on steroids!
2. Rich silks and wools in simple cuts (yes, even for Spring and Summer!) There was so much heavy fabric on display, which gave the clothing a high-quality, 60s feel. Anna Sammorne is using beautiful, jewel-toned fabrics for next Spring/Summer, and structured coats by Jan d’Arc in khaki, grey, white and black had classic minimalist, mod cuts.
3. Tropical florals, romantic prints … An up-and-coming brand featured at Pitti W, 2(4)1, had Pucci-esque printed dresses in bold hues and vibrant patterns. Similar prints were seen at the Carta e Costura showroom, where the colors were more delicate but the patterns equally romantic.
4. Feathers, lacey leather, sequins and texturing! Izmaylova is using lots of feather details on jackets and dresses, while Gilda Midani’s line of “Vintage Remake” featured leather cut to look like delicate lace, sequins and tassels, and crepe-like shiny gold fabrics.
5. White. The luxurious, resort white is still in for next Spring/Summer, and was seen at several booths – In Abiti di Versi, Brebis Noir, and Damadei. Some was more simple, some used embellishments such as pearls and mesh to freshen up the classic look.
6. Aggressive, masculine jackets – we can expect to continue seeing army-inspired collections, such as Foce’s khaki-green jackets with feminine embellishments like rhinestones and studs.
7. Classic Bags in Fragrant Hues – I saw traditional leather handbags in bold greens, pinks, oranges and yellows at Leghila; also, Bedazzled Purses – Mary Frances’ enchanting line of embellished and jeweled party bags was delightfully fanciful.
8. Chunky platforms – Brightly colored platforms and canvas or straw wedges were prevalent; I loved the Gianna Meliani showroom!
9. Don’t forget PERFUME! In keeping with the theme of Pitti W, perfumeries such as Mad et Len, Histoire des Parfums, and La Maison de la Vanille all featured vanilla-infused tropical fragrances – yet none were overpowering.
In all, the Pitti W showcased new and old talents, with an overarching theme that was just delightful. Apparently, we weren’t supposed to take photos at this event, even as press (don’t worry – I snuck in some before I got caught), so unfortunately I only have a select few to share with you here. Hopefully my descriptions will suffice for now! But just think – Brazilian beach, luscious tan, mai tai in hand … what would you be wearing at that moment? That’s the look Spring/Summer 2012 is going for!
Written by Ashley Stefan, European Correspondent
Edited by Sade B. Strehlke, Editor-in-Chief