Milan Fashion Week: shorter week, but revitalized

Faced with seasoned competition from Paris, London and New York, Milan is working hard to win back lost ground. But obstacles remain, and the long-awaited revival of the city as a fashion capital is slow in coming.

The organizers of the Fashion Week, which will take over Milan from September 17 - 22 with the presentation of women’s spring/summer 2015 collections, have announced an intense schedule packed with new names and talent, although it has been reduced to five days as opposed to the six enjoyed during the February edition.
Roberto Cavalli for summer 2014 (Photo: PixelFormula)

Unfortunately, Milanese designers have once more lacked cohesion, each preferring to pursue their individual interests. Giorgio Armani, which has usually ended the week with a show on Monday, has decided to move up to Saturday, September 20, which is considered a day that sees more international press. Following his decision to reschedule, several other brands have preferred to show earlier in an already overly front-loaded week.

Among the varying controversies, some designers have chose to show outside of the official schedule. The result: the first four days have 13 shows each, 11 on Sunday, the fifth day... and 4 for the final day: Monday, September 22! While the Camera Nazionale della Moda was previously able to extend the week from 4 to 6 full days, this time it has had to settle for a shorter calendar.
Giorgio Armani (Photo: Ansa)

On the agenda for the week: 138 collections and 36 events, 67 official shows (plus 4 off-schedule schedule, including that for Dolce & Gabbana on Sunday, September 21, which has yet to join the Camera della Moda) and some 78 presentations, as compared with 144 collections, 65 shows and 81 presentations in February.

The marathon schedule, which alternates between big brands and young designers, is marked this season by the abundance of new and not very well known names that are gradually rising as the new foundation of made in Italy.

First, there will be the Milanese designer Chicca Lualdi, who will open Fashion Week on Wednesday, September 17 at 9am. Also among this new generation of Italian designers: Stella Jean, Andrea Incontri, Fausto Puglisi, Cristiano Burani, Uma Wang, Marco de Vincenzo, Musso, MSGM, and Day by Day.
Angelos Bratis, spring/summer 2014 (Photo: PixelFormula)

The Greek designer Angelos Bratis, who is worth mentioning, has been based in Milan for the past two years. Having showed in Milan for the first time last year, he is also scheduled for the opening day, presenting in the imposing theater made available by Giorgio Armani.

Among those names making their debut on the Milan catwalks is Elisabetta Franchi, whose show is scheduled for Saturday, September 20. The designer from Bologna launched her urban chic and ultra feminine brand in 1998, and is showing in Milan in order to increase the visibility of her brand as she aims to expand internationally.

A couple other new names: the New York designer Nicholas K., who will show on September 17 as part of the competition Exported DHL, and the Sardinian designer Antonia Marras, who will present his recently begun line I’M Isola Marras on September 17.

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