As one of the few luxury designer labels that are still independent, Emporio Armani immediately stands out from the crowd. With the industry getting more saturated with luxury conglomerates that can afford to mass produce, and brands creating to please the masses instead of to set new trends, fashion houses seem to produce more and more homogeneous looks.
Armani however, manages to consistently produce innovative, cohesive and stunning shows, season after season. Their AW23 Menswear show in Milan was no exception. Most interestingly, they made the decision to steer away from the trend towards androgynous gender-fluid designs. Officially this trend is cited as a societal move away from gender norms, although some argue that this trend was adopted for commercial reasons.
Menswear has often been viewed as the less important side of fashion. Most campaigns and investment goes into womenswear, and only two of the big four cities (Paris and Milan) host separate menswear fashion weeks. Gender-fluid designs have in recent years helped to expose menswear designers to new customers compared to traditional menswear silhouettes.
When you produce a collection of 101 looks that are sexy, confident, self-assured and coherent, as Armani has done, people will be forced to listen. Giorgio Armani wowed with this collection of velvet suits, warm rust colours, oversized charcoal blazers and cinched waists; all expertly tailored and styled.
Giorgio Armani stands as an outlier from his peers. A trend setter instead of a trend follower, he is a craftsmanship-focused designer with a fiscal mindset. He does all of this with an empire of ready-to-wear menswear and womenswear, haute couture and cosmetics. Giorgio shows that walking to the beat of your own drum will always produce inspired, fresh and fun looks. Emporio Armani is leading the pack of menswear designers, with a clear and unignorable vision of themselves as a brand and who the Armani man is. If there are more shows like this Armani one to come in Men’s fashion week, the fashion world will sooner rather than later pay attention to what menswear designers have to say.
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