Gucci unveils ‘hahaha’ collaboration with Harry Styles

MILAN (AP) — By Monday’s fourth and final day of Milan Fashion Week menswear previews for next spring and summer, designers understood the assignment.

The season appeared more appropriate than the weekend, as rising temperatures provided a reminder that dressing up in warm weather can mean covering up, but in a relaxed manner that accommodates elegance and playfulness.

Highlights of Monday’s show:

Giorgio Armani Preserves Elegance

Against the onslaught of streetwear and dressing down, Giorgio Armani is defending elegance all season long.

The 87-year-old designer’s spring-summer 2023 collection mixes classics with more unusual iterations, as the fashion world demands. Providing elegance is a stand-alone task.

“I don’t know when we will miss the man who moves through life with this refinement,” the designer said after the show.

For its main line, Armani focused on casual, comfy suits for day or evening. There was movement in loose trousers and jackets, but also in graphic repetitive prints that created the effect of waves. Prints are consistently trendy on the print look.

“It is true that it is nice to see a man well dressed. But it’s also good to see the evolution of fashion. Bring the basics, I’ve always done them in my life. It is also true that (market) demands innovation,” Armani said.

On that front, Armani created tunic-length tops. Jackets and shirts rarely shine in menswear. A neatly tied foulard replaces a shirt under an open jacket. A scarf over a white suit creates a sweeping effect.

The color palate was rooted in a combo of seaside white and navy, melting into shimmering shades of blue and gray before exploding into a combination of purple, pink and sea foam green.

The season’s shoe is an unflattering espadrille, replacing the sneaker of recent seasons, and which was worn by Armani himself, showing off them with an ironic laugh. The caps had no edge, better to show the face.

“Acceptable. Reliable. More reassuring,” Armani summed up the collection.

Gucci unveils hahaha collection

Alessandro Michele teamed up with Harry Styles to create a mid-season collection that fills sewing with teeny delight. The collection is titled “Hahaha”, which harnesses a sense of joy, and is also an expression of their initials: Harry and Alessandro.

“It was actually easier for him to play with me to make clothes than to sing along to him,” Michelle joked to reporters at a preview of the collection inside Milan’s vintage store.

Harry Styles was just beginning his solo career when Michelle proposed to the fashion world what a new era of gender-fluid dressing seemed to appeal to Styles immediately. Mitchell said the singer added one of his first films as a Gucci creative director to his wardrobe as he was exiting “One Direction.”

This relationship has evolved over the years and takes flight in the frequent exchange of fashion inspiration on WhatsApp.

“At times, WhatsApp becomes a mood board,” Mitchell said. Though two decades apart, the two have found common ground in fashion: Michelle says Styles shed a kind of teenage glee, while Styles has matured into more tailored looks. The new collection has dual effects.

The pair created a series of cute block prints against gingham, which included the collection’s mascot, a grumpy teddy bear, as well as a munching squirrel and a combination of a sheep and cherry. Gucci styles sew suit jackets from prints, and pair them with colorful, wide-leg trousers or distressed jeans. Prints are repeated on pajamas, while patches inject whimsy on knitwear or ribbed white tanks. Accessories include an updated Jackie bag covered with grommets.

Assorted on the racks of vintage stores, Gucci hahaha collections were often hard to distinguish from stock.

“It’s a big compliment to me that it’s confused with vintage,” said Mitchell. “Vintage means well made.”

Joyon perfects summer trousers

French designer Louis-Gabriel Noucci understood this assignment, creating an easy-to-wear and distinctive summer look for Chinese brand Joan built around trousers.

Noucci’s designs combined Chinese draping with athletic hiking pants, which include piping and secret utility pockets.

A print of the Chinese landscape “A Thousand Miles of Rivers and Mountains” by Wang Zimeng, featuring bold brush strokes of blue, green and ocher, formed the motif of the season. Details from the painting appeared as a graphic print on a pair of wide-legged trousers, but the pattern also featured a more subtle print on the jeans.

Shirtless models walk around the sunny courtyard of Milan’s Sforzesco palace, bare torso displaying how trousers rest snugly at the waist.

“You have to wear clothes to look comfortable. Pants are the hardest thing to do in a men’s wardrobe, to be honest,” Nucci said. “They have to be functional, they have to be comfortable. They really give you the tone of the silhouette, I think, more than the jacket.”

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