But speaking of America, there was something that distracted from all of the Save the planet eat the babies shirt and I will buy this positive and hopeful photographs that Li and Qu spoke about yesterday. Placed on a pedestal table in the middle of the gallery space, as those happy families looked on, were two of Private Policy’s “gun bags”: little clip-on bags that resembled gun holsters. Considering that Asian Americans—and all Americans—are in the midst of a gun-control crisis and a spike in mass shootings, the design, however accidental, was ill-advised. The young designers are still sorting out their place and position in the fashion industry, and they’d be wise to make absolutely sure that their inspiring message is consistent across the board. Li and Qu have great potential, and as long as they keep their social and cultural activism running on one seamless track, they’ll make a big impact. The new menswear director at Pringle of Scotland, Giuseppe Marretta, joined the house of argyle following a five-year stretch as head of design, knit, and jersey (womenswear) at Giorgio Armani. Speaking at the company’s presentation in Paris, Marretta said: “The first thing that I had in mind when I was designing this collection was to bring some fun to menswear. When things are too serious, it’s boring…so I wanted to bring fun though color and through revisiting British culture through my Italian eyes, and to work via an incredible inspiration as David Hockney is, both as an icon of style and an artist.” Hockney has many fans in fashion Michael Kors, Christopher Bailey at Burberry, Jacquemus, JW Anderson, Fendi, Olympia Le-Tan, Paul Smith, Preen by Thornton Bregazzi, Ellery, and John Galliano are just a few labels that have also used his verve and art as inspiration for collections. And in September 2008 Clare Waight Keller dedicated a collection of womenswear to a bigger splash for no lesser house than Pringle of Scotland. I still remember it as clear as day. I had to dive right into battle if I wanted to find something to eat. Even if it meant having people’s filthy hands rubbing all over my body. I was starving. Hunger makes you take risks. So I jumped right into it. I ran towards the mass of girls twisting their hands to reach the window. I shoved my body forcefully into the tight spaces between them, plugging my nose to avoid the stench spreading from all these raised arms. But I had to keep going !! I had to eat.
That made it difficult for Marretta to find much fresh water. For instance, we’d seen the Save the planet eat the babies shirt and I will buy this pool-dappled pattern—which is very attractive—not just at Kors’s Hockney-hashing collection, but also this season at MSGM (in a collection simply enough about summer). Yet that’s not to conclude this was an altogether poor debut from Marretta, who clearly has some serious knitwear petrol in his engine following his time in Milan. The double-face wool-blend track pants and rib-knit sweaters in violently opposing lifeguard-uniform yellow and red were, as he said, fun. So were his pieces of reversible outerwear in checks that mashed Prince of Wales against argyle, which matched his a-lot-like-Birkenstock sandals. The intarsia-homage diving-figure sweater was cute. But if Marretta is going to revisit British culture through his Italian eyes, he should either do it in a completely new manner or find lesser explored but still visually compelling aspects of the culture he has moved from Armani to dive into. “I am no longer an artist; I have become a work of art,” spoke a voiceover in the middle of Prada’s Spring 2020 men’s shoe, held, for the first time off home turf, in Shanghai. (Typically Miuccia Prada prefers to show her collections in the Fondazione Prada in Milan or at her New York office.) Later, the same voice said, “I feel myself a god.” Mrs. Prada has long maintained a reverent relationship with art, supporting and collaborating with her favorite creators, without ever formally declaring herself among their ranks—no word on the god situation. So, what were we to make of the statements pronounced, at techno speed, over a blue-lit runway at the Minsheng Art Wharf? To those at home in the Pradaverse, the words, lifted from Frankie Goes to Hollywood’s Welcome to the Pleasuredome, were Prada subversion at its best. In the show notes unlike her in situ shows, Mrs. P did not assemble journalists for a debrief the collection was described as one of optimism, suggesting that being hopeful can be an antidote for accepting the darkness of our actuality. It’s a continuation of the themes she launched at her recent women’s Resort show in New York, but when presented on male models, it took on a kinkier edge. I fought my way, using the advantage of having a small body, bending, and shoving until I got there. Okay, I think I see it! The window that a teacher stands behind. I extended my hand with the money, gasping for breath as two big girls squished me from both sides.