Fendi Pre-Fall 2017 Collection

Fendi’s spirit of sumptuous modernity is well suited to a Fall collection. It’s where the label’s blend of magnificent craftsmanship and relentless innovation can be lavished upon lineups replete with the most sensational furs. Yet in Fendi’s wonderland there’s no trace of dreamy, retro wintry visions, nostalgia being a concept banned from this landscape. Here, a sense of luxurious fun always prevails, along with an abundance of cultivated wit. Both Karl Lagerfeld and Silvia Venturini Fendi have wit in spades.

The Haute Fourrure show held in July in Rome, where models seemed to float on the Fontana di Trevi’s waters, was a sensational pièce de théâtre, masterful in its illusionistic mise-en-scène. This sense of make-believe also infused the Pre-Fall collection, which was all about visual flips: Nothing was as it seemed at first glance. Fabrics mimicked fur textures, while precious furs were treated without pomposity, as if they were the humblest material, ready to be subjected to the most extreme, irreverent experiments. Case in point was a flying caban in emerald silk jacquard, whose textured surface looked exactly like Persian lamb. To further enhance the metamorphic factor, its silhouette could be transformed by playing with zippers inserted at the waist; unzip them to produce flounced cascades at the sides. An alpaca robe coat was printed to look like the most expensive lynx fur, its collar embellished by contrast with a touch of real chinchilla. A short coat in dégradé shaved mink had its hem decorated with delicate cut-out motifs; they were rigorously made by hand, not lasered. A dark sheared mink midi coat was apparently embroidered with a floral needlework motif which, at close inspection, was nothing less than a miniature fur intarsia.

The conversation between feminine, almost romantic elements and the modernist edge so typical of Fendi’s vocabulary was at play throughout the collection, underlining the experimental spirit which is one of the label’s trademarks; yet translated into a softer vibe. Graphic diamond motifs were printed on linear day dresses, and silhouettes were kept balanced even when treated with opulent decorations, innovative asymmetric cuts, or illusionistic 3-D detailing. Even the new messenger bag, called Back to School, was given the transformation treatment, becoming an elegant backpack. Bows, pom-poms, fringes, studs, and furry charms were abundantly scattered on shoes, bags, hair accessories, sunglasses, and bijoux. It all looked pretty fabulous, from head to toe.

by Tiziana Cardini

Fendi Pre-Fall 2017 Collection