Kim Jones looked to the Fendi archives for inspiration this season. “I am interested in looking at things that Karl has done, and seeing how we can develop them – both visually and technically,” Jones said in his show notes. From the Y2K details to the It-accessories, read on for the standout moments from the spring/summer 2023 show.
It was all about the colors
Peppermint, lime, coral, slate: the color palette Kim Jones mixed for his Fendi show oscillated subversively between the saccharine sweet and the medically twisted. “I wanted to add the bright colors because Fendi’s color palette is always quite natural. I wanted to mix it up with three tones in every look,” he explained after the show. Presented in Fendi’s runway room in Milan, it blended those colors in a Lagerfeld-ish filtrage of transparent layers in dresses and in tops, some of which were embroidered with floral motifs inspired by ones from the late master’s Fendi archives. “I am interested in looking at things that Karl has done, and seeing how we can develop them – both visually and technically,” Jones remarked in his show notes.
It rode the Y2K wave
Jones’s collection loosely drew on the collections Lagerfeld designed for Fendi between 1996 and 2002 – a part of the archive he’s been investigating in recent proposals – and, as such, rode the Y2K wave currently washing over fashion and social media’s ever-nostalgic youth culture. He expressed it in a slinky silhouette of sheer below-the-knee dresses and low-riding trousers – often worn together – with skirts sliced up the thigh and snug knitted tops, including some tight cardigans that pushed dainty garments even further into the erogenous zones we saw in last week’s London shows. Some dresses were cut like aprons, open in the back, which didn’t just add to the filter-y, ethereal mood of the collection, but also to its styling-centric proposition.
It was street style gold
Because the collection lent itself so well to styling – layering, color-blending and all-important accessorizing (we’ll get to that) – it quickly travelled from the TV series and youth films of the Y2K to their present-day equivalent: social media dressing and its real-life street style platform where influencers pose up a storm in outfits that felt decidedly echoed in Jones’s collection. Next to the bright color palette, it never came across more than in the plastic-y nurse’s platform sandals and boots painted in those same subversive colors, and in the extremely graphic furry bags and logo accessories that matched them. At Fendi, Jones is creating call-and-response fashion for the digital generations, whether it’s designer collaborations (Versace, Marc Jacobs, Skims) or clothes like these.
It-bags and jewelry were abundant
In the mix, Silvia Venturini Fendi – the brand’s accessories director – threw in some treats to make those generational hearts palpitate a bit faster: tiny mini bags worn as pendants on necklaces, “double bags” worn together (because why carry one designer bag when you can carry two?), and the aforementioned furry shoppers that will surely take limited-edition to new limits. Her daughter Delfina Delettrez Fendi, who designs the jewelry, debuted a ’90s-appropriate logo choker linked together by Fs, which would have had Cher Horowitz swooning.
Kim Jones paid homage to the Queen
Backstage, Kim Jones wore a very special piece of jewelry on his heart. “It’s my OBE,” he said. “The daytime one,” referring to the decoration he was awarded by Queen Elizabeth in her 2020 Birthday Honors List. As we mark a fortnight since her death this week, it was a personal and touching tribute to Her late Majesty by one of the most successful British designers flying the Union Jack on the runways of Milan and Paris.
Originally published in Vogue.co.uk