Prada’s new-age Land Girls

Miuccia Prada shows us something new in Milan

Just when we thought the Eighties were about to win battle of the influences during Milan Fashion Week, Miuccia Prada throws a curveball at the season, showing an autumn/winter collection without a shoulder-pad, neon flash or satin trousersuit in sight.

So who was the fashion world’s high priestess inspired by? Judged on the nipped-in hourglass silhouettes, the thin plain leather belts, those wool skirt suits, the thigh-high rubber waders and utilitarian chic which filled her collection, World War II Land Girls.

‘The collection was a take on the country,’ Prada told reporters, ‘for being in the fresh air, not being in a nightclub.’ However, that doesn’t mean there wasn’t anything for her working girls to slip into after a hard day toiling the fields, with deep V-necked red dresses in various different tactile fabrics a staple of the collection, as well as gem-studded leather fringe skirts. Her models certainly looked ready for a night on the town with their bed-head hair and eyes rimmed with red glitter.

Accessories, including a leather satchel modeled on the bags her grandfather used in the Forties, were functional rather than flippant. Shoes, for instance, had rubber soles and the heels, though still high, weren’t so tall they prompted any models to fall, as so famously happened during the same show last season.

The thing that held everything in the show together, and had this particular reporter cooing in delight, was the sumptuous colour palette. From the deep ruby reds and shiny russets to the ochre and tawny browns, the choice of fabric shades was in total contrast to every other show which has been seen not only in Milan this week, but in New York and London previously, too, and that uniqueness, after all, is what Prada always does so well.

‘You need to uplift yourself, because it is difficult trying to be positive,’ Miuccia Prada was overheard saying backstage. ‘But I am in a good mood.’ We can see why.

SEE ALL THE PHOTOS HERE

Report from Carla Bevan in Milan

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