Max Mara, one of the most famous Italian luxury brands, is going through one of its brightest phase since it was born. Rediscovered and subsequently worn by more and more celebrities since earlier this year, Max Mara’s creative director Ian Griffiths is now trying to give the label a younger, yet still sophisticated look, which could keep on appealing more to its cosmopolitan audience. Known for often getting inspired by the big city life, this time Griffiths got charmed by New York’s streets, giving the Max Mara pre-fall 2016 collection an ultimate urban-chic turn. He looked for diverse sources of inspirations, finding himself lost in the many writings and songs of three New Yorker heroines: Lydia Lunch, Siouxsie Sioux and Dorothy Parker.
Punk rock artist Lydia Lunch was one of New York’s most rebellious teenagers, and still is one of the Big Apple’s most notable citizens, even though she now lives in Barcelona. Being the indisputable princess of the No Wave scene, her style reflected her empowering lyrics and songs, and aimed at outraging and surprising New York’s upper class. Siouxsie Sioux’s style also turned her into an unconventional icon and still charms us with its romantic and often overly dramatic, Gothic influences. Although she hated being considered a style icon, Parker indeed was a trendsetter, and her snappy classic and dark-hued style was reflected on her writings. You could easily spot her wearing big hats, round-neck long-sleeved cashmere sweaters, black dresses and princess coats.
Keeping these three heroines and style icons in mind, Griffiths’ intention to celebrate and combine their unique styles becomes apparent as soon as we approach the first pieces of the Max Mara pre-fall 2016 collection. Fishnet stockings, sheer fabrics and a sophisticated palette of autumnal shades and dark Gothic hues meet Max Mara’s trademark coats, among which a re-edition of the iconic and traditional 101801 swing coat in tawny brown has made a relished comeback.
Dramatic makeup and hairstyles, which clearly recall Sioux’s style, complement the leathery double-breasted biker jackets and Parker-inspired pencil skirts, the slightly sheer fabrics of which create impressive contrasts with the earthy colors of the coats. Lunch’s punk-rock style finds its place within the collection’s many accessories, such as studded bracelets, which once again have been paired with refined Parker-inspired cuts and Sioux-inspired fabrics. Instead of only focusing on one protagonist, Griffiths opted for mix-and-match of influences, creating a line-up that somehow manages to be highly sophisticated and quirky at the same time. That’s also why he combined punkish fishnet sleeves of the earthy-colored sweaters and coats with patchwork motifs, topping it all off with sleek leather ankle boots with stiletto heels.
Of course, he could not miss the chance to include some of pre-fall’s main trends in his collection, such as pleated skirts and bell-bottom/palazzo trousers. Alternating autumnal hues, patchwork motifs, total black and even floral prints, he completed the Max Mara pre-fall 2016 collection with perfectly tailored high-waisted palazzo and bell-bottom pants that just succeeded in creating jaw-dropping outfits that totally aim at celebrating any woman’s independence and strength.
Photos courtesy of Vogue