Frequent flyer

Fendi FW18
Fashion | 16 January 2018

Last year Glaswegian artist @Hey_Reilly posted a photo to his Instagram, a rudimentary edit he made of the Fendi and Fila logos melded to one. He tagged it optimistically with search terms like #beauty #scent #goth and #monday in the hopes that some day it might reach the right hands. Strangely enough, it did, and at yesterday’s FW18 show he was stood backstage with the same Silvia Venturini Fendi who first PM’d him to work together on her latest collection.

This artistic collab is Fendi’s third in a row. One of @Hey_Reilly’s print, a kind of internet ad absurdum collage that compressed images together like starry skies, bananas, a racehorse’s ass, swatches of AstroTurf and Prince of Wales check, was transferred to reversible technical nylons and cashmere. His second, of foodstuffs and animals overlaid with new Fendi-isms to hashtag like FFAMILY and FFREDOM, appeared on t-shirts and embroidered knits.

The runway was theatrically staged as an airport arrival hall, bordered with a baggage claim conveyor belt where monogrammed luggage drifted mildly onward as the show progressed, rendered in leathers, alligator and, in the case of one baby carrier, fur. As well as merchandising its full range of travel cases quite coolly, this setting allowed Fendi to play out countless outfit scenarios for its imagined frequent flyer, from long-haul tracksuits to rain macs to fur-trimmed down suits straight off the slopes.

For fleeting visits and ideal luggage-saving solutions, every piece was two-in-one – some were reversible and others were built with inner layers and removable options. meanwhile there was a definite 70s feel thanks to bulky intarsia fur coats, shearling jackets and check suits. Oh, and incase of sudden downpours? Fendi have you covered with a new hat-slash-umbrella that straps to the forehead – like the one Robert W. Patten claims to have invented and worn by Jim Carrey in Bruce Almighty and Bill Murray in Space Jam – with one of @Hey_Reilly’s graphics patterned across the canopy – totally hands-free, totally epic.

Fendi described the collection as ‘optimistic’, and as the Euro Disco hit Follow Me by Amanda Lear blasted at full volume at the collection’s crescendo, and a line of umbrella hats bobbed by, there was no doubt that the takeaway was one that was thoroughly feel-good. We’ll take a one-way ticket to destination Fendi please – first class, obviously.

GALLERYCatwalk looks from this show