Prada is the priestess of personal style
I am usually extolling the virtues of Miuccia Prada on this blog for a myriad of reasons chief among them being her insistence on fashion as an interest to be taken seriously despite its superficial reputation. More than that though, she never panders or presents clothing for the sake of shock value and fame. Her clothes are real and wearable which are admirable characteristics in a market (and world?) saturated with outlandish and garish screams for attention. She is also a prescient trendsetter, dishing up prints and silhouettes that fast fashion retailers are hungry to knock off the minute it hits the floor.
The “IT” moment in her 2018 show is more difficult to replicate because it looks like everything in your closet already: peacoat, sheer tights, sandals, mini skirts, baby doll dresses, maybe a Bermuda short hiding somewhere in the depths of your drawers from 2004. For the ingenuity of making classic pieces feel new, we should give credit to her for being a maverick of personal style.
Of course she was sure to include the usual suspects that are proprietary to her brand (the wide set straps on her body con dresses and her A-line, knee-length skirts.) Even her models brand themselves as Prada girls, carrying themselves down the runway with a sort of elfish loaf.
Yet the show still came off as fresh. Why? She played with ultra-cool style, proportion and a few choice accessories over the clothes themselves. Bare legs was as critical to pulling the whole look together as the very classically tailored wool peacoat.
And she maintained that tried and true principles of design are important as she chose to either emphasize the top or bottom—never both, exhibiting a pious and enviable adherence to balance and proportion. And her choice of subtle and impactful feminine details, such as the satin bows dangling from a side of a skirt appeared to be an afterthought rather than the painstakingly intentional and meticulously calculated placement that it undoubtably was.
This mix and matching of pre-existing oddities and proportion playing is a novel way to approach dressing which gives the most mileage for what you already have in your closet. It places significance on the ensemble as a whole rather than the latest and greatest item and it takes the pressure off consumer madness to own everything. But, best of all, this show encourages you to make outfits your own, staking claim on the idea of personal style in any way you like.