Jun 23, 2015
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Milan Fashion Week: boys just want to have fun

Jun 23, 2015

The Milanese menswear collections for Spring / Summer 2016 were all about challenging gender stereotypes when it comes to fashion, with traditionally feminine colors, patterns and fabrics splashed all over the runways.

Dolce & Gabbana - AFP / Olivier Morin

Gucci led the way with a flouncy collection of pussy-bow blouses, crochet shorts and frilly cuffs courtesy of new creative director Alessandro Michele. Pretty and elegant motifs in the shape of butterflies and birds, floral jacquard prints and lace shirts with ruffled panels and flower corsage "ties" were just some of the examples of the house's feminine take on menswear. The look was styled out with tinted glasses, laced-up ballet pumps and fistfuls of glittery rings for an overall magpie aesthetic.

There were elements of the trend at Dolce and Gabbana, where the oriental-inspired pieces included subtly feminine silk floral bombers and thin bird-print sweaters. Pyjama-like tailoring added a softness to the collection.

Italian fashion house Etro featured paisley and floral motifs as one of the main components of its collection. The brand played with gender stereotypes by dressing models head to toe in traditionally 'girlish' colors such as dusky pinks and lilac suedes for a look that was both pretty and plush, yet saved from becoming too saccharine by sharp tailoring.

The theme continued at Canali, where elegant, gemlike hues were the star attraction of the show. Colors ranging from graceful lilacs and dusky violets to burnt oranges and duck egg blues could be seen on the catwalk, with models often dressed head to toe in the same color -- a move that made the look less fashion victim and more of a bold and decisive statement. Again the tailoring was decidedly masculine, with boxy jackets and sharp suits providing a mannish silhouette to counteract the chocolate box hues on offer.

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