As per usual, there was a lot going on in Philipp Plein‘s fall 2016 fashion show. For his ready-to-wear fall/winter 2016 runway showing at Milan Fashion Week, he included a performance by Chris Brown, although this wasn’t quite as exciting as last season’s appearance by Courtney Love. The clothes that walked the runway were a mixture of so many styles, yet everything worked together well. To best describe the collection, one would have to refer to sci-fi futurism, an ancient or dystopian society, and classic regality; these were the three most noticeable components in the garments and accessories.
The actual show of the runway was another spectacle, which was to be expected. For this season, Plein brought in three semitrailers with models hitching a ride in the backs, clinging to the frames. This was the perfect prelude for the pieces that walked the runway, particularly those with industrial structuring that seemed to draw inspiration from stormtroopers; after all, what better way to celebrate the new Star Wars movie than to see aspects in a Plein show? But there were also the other aforementioned elements that intermingled with this more futuristic theme.
Gold trim gave the image of either an ancient or a dystopian society, depending on the context of each garment. In some instances, this also played into the more regal occurrences in the line. For instance, a floor-length black number with rib-shaped cutouts along the sides featured a gold-studded high neck with thick straps of the same gold in an interesting pattern down to the bust-line. This type of design reminded of ancient Egypt, and the royalty of the time in particular. This is where the regality ebbed its way into the mix. It was also present in the rare occasion that lace popped up on the runway. The use was minimal, but when it was there, the black lace was rich and stunning, hinting back to Victorian elegance. These three aspects were Plein’s new way of standing out for the season, as per his standard accomplishment of not conforming to current trends.
This is an aspect he touched on in a statement about his show. “Everyone at the moment is going on a ’70s mood. But I don’t want to be a follower; I want to do things the way I like to do. And I am influenced by modern street style, and by hip hop. That’s what I love.”
All in all, a Plein fashion show at Milan is a spectacle worth seeing. His runway shows go beyond the catwalk and focus more on the entertainment of a show. From his surprise celebrity performances to the progressive use of technology, you never quite know what to expect with each coming season. Due to this level of intrigue, it wouldn’t be surprising to see the designer with his slot for Milan Fashion Week for many more delightfully surprising seasons to come.
Photos courtesy of Vogue