Thursday marked a new dawn for Fendi, as a sphere of tangerine light rose over the runway. It wasn’t just a scene-setter dreamt up by a savvy creative team, but a purposeful symbol.
The spring/summer 2020 show at Milan Fashion Week was the first womenswear collection for Silvia Venturini Fendi, who took the reins at the luxury Italian house following Karl Lagerfeld’s passing in February.
"The sunny setting evokes the start of a new day, new pages to be written, but also captures the enthusiasm of a summer day," Venturini Fendi told reporters backstage. “[And] when summer gets closer, my state of mind changes.”
Venturini Fendi’s state of mind, it seemed, was somewhere between the swinging sixties and psychedelic seventies: the florals were vintage and vibrant; the suits were pretty and pastel; and the palette was nostalgic, all chocolate and camel swirled with streaks of marigold and mauve.
It-girls Kaia Gerber, the Hadid sisters and a blonde Kendall Jenner strutted the glossy back runway in sweet skirt suits, babydoll dresses and oversized sunglasses – the kind of looks you’d dream of sporting on a glamorous getaway. Venturini Fendi drew inspiration from Ponza, a little-known island between Naples and Rome and the site of her family holiday home.
There were plenty of references to what’s new and now, too; case in point – teeny tiny bags worn as necklaces, which brought not only sparkle but a sense of humour and wit.
And the soundtrack? “Let The Sunshine In”, from 1967 musical Hair. For this storied fashion house, the future looks bright.