Milan Fashion Week: land of luscious leathers, sophisticated street style with an ever-outlandish twist, and where the avant-garde is sure to merge with the classic. Fall 2014 was no exception. While it was hard to narrow the list down, here are my favorite Milan Fashion Week bags:
It’s been awhile since Bottega Veneta excited me like this. One cannot live by knot-topped clutches and delicately woven bags alone (or can I…?), and the brand has not only realized this truth, they’ve run with an elevated and expanded direction. Skin is in! I’m talking serious texture and jungle-animal instincts. Ambitious concepts – like watersnake-varnished, brushed-calf leather, layers and layers of crocodile, and strategic, monochrome mash-ups of exotics – seem so effortless in their hands. Knockout curvy handles plus brushed-black chains equal unparalleled desirability, and in attention-grabbing shades of chartreuse (which proves to look stunning shaken up with black weave), plum, and shocking pink, this collection is not only to be lusted after, it’s not to be missed.
It’s no shock that a new design director at the helm of Bally brought the next level of chic. Pablo Coppola formerly applied his talents to the likes of Christian Dior and Tom Ford, so it comes as no shock that this collection is a stunner. Actually, it’s one of the best re-interpretations and brand revivals in recent history. With a focus on clean construction and breathtaking exotic skins and high-shine leathers, this is elegance all the way. Delicate details and a combination of punchy (bright yellow) and neutral (tempting taupe) colors give way to structured duffles for day and impossibly roomy top-handles, while the asymmetrical element of the shoulder bags (a simple, sharp, lopped-off edge) hits the right note of offbeat appeal.
I love being surprised, and Salvatore Ferragamo delivered the most pleasant of little jaw-droppers with their Fall collection. Massimiliano Giornetti has revamped the house’s quintessential Gancio hardware in exaggerated and fabulous form. While the ready-to-wear illustrated a unique way with materials (like needle-punched jacquard, metallic-dipped leather, and leather-piping on just about everything), it’s the statement accents on the structured leather, crocodile, and pony-hair bags that stole the show. Flaunting a sense of boldness, the extra-oversized metal bits (the handles appropriated in such intelligent ways), glimmering and gold-tone, strike the right balance of confidence and restraint.