DRESSED in loose-fitting denim shorts and a halter-neck bra, 27-year-old model Anna Ewers opened up Etro’s sun-soaked SS21 runway show on Thursday, perfectly encapsulating the 42 looks that followed – romantic, versatile and oh-so Italian.

After relocating from the gardens of the Four Seasons due to an approaching rainstorm, Veronica Etro, creative director of the family-managed fashion house, unveiled her Milan Fashion Week collection in a lemon-tree-laden garage space, just down the road from the brand’s headquarters on Via Spartaco.

Inspired by an endless Mediterranean summer, the collection contained a third fewer looks than February’s AW20 offering and, honed in on the brand’s Italian heritage, steering away from the bohemian aesthetic of past seasons.

After digging out an old vinyl player, which may have belonged to her grandparents, Etro spent her time in lockdown listening to classic Neapolitan songs – tunes which later provided the starting point for her spring interpretation of the classic Riviera style.

Baggy Bermuda jeans in upcycled denim matched with striped shirts in shades of pastel, oversized bucket hats and cropped, colour-block knits, embroidered with the brand’s new Pegasus-Triton logo.

Retro beach tees and draped silk tunics decorated with 1992 Bandiere da Parata foulard prints convincingly argued a new uniform for coastal yachting, while knotted paisley shirts and sharp-shouldered blazers provided a refreshing wave of sophistication.

Post-lockdown, a new outlook on shopping has emerged. Now more than ever, luxury consumers are on the hunt for versatile, day-to-night pieces and this collection provided just that.

Expertly interweaving familiar archival prints with fresh-feeling, warm-weather essentials, these are clothes that will stand the test of time, long after the last taste of summer has faded.

by Joshua Hendren

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