AW 20-21 women’s shows: designers cast a spell on the future

Against a troubled societal backdrop, designers are taking a moment to question the whole issue of ‘time’ in fashion. Without being nostalgic or facile about it, they’re refocusing on what’s essential. Vintage, even historical, references dive into the past as if to better reinterpret it, and shape the future. Mixing eras and styles, designers don’t serve up a literal version of the past as much as infuse it with a new enchantment. This approach also helps to prolong time, encouraging more sustainable and meaningful fashions, to offset the industry’s current frenetic pace.



Brashly bourgeoise



This season posh dress codes continue to fascinate designers who update classic references without strictly adhering to any one decade.


Suits, which were all over the runways, borrow their references from the ’90s. Full and structured, with exaggeratedly square shoulders, suits re cut in luxurious, cashmere-like woollens, in extravagant and provocative shades of fuchsia, electric blue and emerald green. A symbol of feminine power, jackets are worn over bare torsos, in extra-short dress versions or as jackets teamed with stretchy leather or latex leggings for the feminine yet feminist woman who takes her demands seriously.


There’s a hint of the ’70s in the collections as well, with totally unisex versions of iconic pieces  – the supple and small leather jacket, high-waisted fitted velvet trousers and little ultra-fitted sheepskin jackets. At times the silhouette has a slightly bohemian air, with a printed scarf tied on carelessly tousled hair. Men and women have the similar look of teenagers steeped in a slightly bourgeois rock culture.


Capes made an appearance in collections from NY to Milan and Paris. Prince of Wales and houndstoooth versions had the discreet bourgeois charm of a heroine out of a Claude Sautet movie, in newly oversized and ultra-long cuts, in traditional shorn black velvet, accessorized with jeweled fastenings and embroidery, crossing styles and periods.




Fabrics |Woollens | SHANDONG RUYI WOOLEN GARMENT GROUP CO., LTD, China | Réf : 233746/1001 – double faced stretch | W95/Ly5 | See more



Fabrics |Woollens | MARUWA, Japan | Réf : TD07-0017 – TD07-0017 | 52,4%CO 47,6%W | See more



Fabrics |Casual | Italian Converter, Italy | Réf : 0455F00C – Gaucho lak | 70%PU 30%PL | See more



Leather |Full grain leather | Conceria Stella, Italy | Réf : POEME ECO – POEME ECO| Calf | See more




Leather |Fur | HENAN PROSPER, China | Réf : Transformed luster – Transformed luster| Sheep | See more




Historic references



Jabot style ruffles, oversized cuffs in spectacular lace, leather culotte-skirts, long velvet capes, cuffed pirate boots  – the references aren’t piled on in the same outfit so as to avoid overly literal references, but they’re conspicuous. They depict a romantic woman, with a haughty bearing and noble appearance, but with the championing spirit of a musketeer.




Fabrics |Plain | Velours de lyon, France | Réf : 4801 – Velours froissé | 100% VISCOSE | See more





Fabrics |Lace | KLAUBER BROTHERS, United States | Réf : KLAUBER_BROTHERS_39284X_ – KLAUBER_BROTHERS_39284X_ | 55% P 45% N | See more




Accessories |Functional accessories | GAFFORELLI Srl, Italy | Réf : 1105_camp – Barocco Old Gold Frog | Cotton | See more





The big night out



The woman on the runways this season loves special occasions, going out and playing with elegance. She has an effortless way of mixing styles. The black dress, not necessarily little, is her best friend. In draped versions in stamped velvet, with gemstone details for a luxurious flashy version, or with asymmetrical or exaggerated shoulders, the black dress is the mark of a strong and confident woman. It can also be enhanced with opulent detailing – especially fringes – whether extra-long and tone-on-tone, metallic or feathered.



More futuristic versions with extra narrow waists were also shown in soft metallic leather, ranging from matt to shiny. Sometimes the colour range expands, predominantly in dark and nocturnal versions with deep, pigmented reds, purples and emerald greens. In a nonchalant and sensual version, the look went to long silk satin night gowns. Embellished with lace, they came teamed with oversized, kimono-style robes printed with twilight jungle foliage, set off by streamline biker boots.





Fabrics |Silkies | TAKISADA-NAGOYA, Japan | Réf : 31-62403 – DYEMAGICAL SATIN | 100%POLYESTER| See more



Accessories |Casual | Passamaneria Italiana Srl, Italy | Réf : 22.242/30 – 22.242/30 | 100% AC| See more




Accessories |Ornaments | Galeottipiume srl, Italy | Réf : Art.100.837 – Frangia biots metalizzata | 95% natural feathers+5% pa | See more




Fabrics |Prints | MONTEOLIVETO Spa, Italy | Réf : TIBET – TIBET| 100%VI| See more



Sassily bourgeois, infused with history or romance, women’s looks for AW 20-21 mix together past references, giving them a future vibe for an confidently forward-thinking woman.

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