Maximalist Minimalism

Miuccia Prada and Raf Simons give minimalism the Prada treatment
By Bailey Slater | Fashion | 24 February 2022

While their peers are excelling with a more-is-more approach to the future of dress, Miuccia and Raf showed that a return to the minimal is an equal temptation.

Of course, this isn’t to say their definition of minimalism subscribes to your preconceived ideas. Oh no, this is minimalism in bright and gaudy sweaters, minimalism in extravagant feathered shoulders, minimalism in glittery, knee-length nylon or tactile hot pink leather, a minimalism that isn’t minimalism at all, really.

The two designers respun officewear in slender pencil skirts and extravagantly beaded mesh underlayers, and in plain white vests given the triangle motif treatment. Oversized blazers met the same fate, fashioned for a night on the town with opaque and finely knitted skirts. The bag of the season is thick and structured – boxy, even – in blinding patent leather hues of lavender, brown and black, growing bigger as the show twirled on.

Necklaces were windswept from the front of low-necked dresses, anchored to the side with smooth broaches and colour-blocked skirts segment tactile fabrics in the most dazzling of combinations. But it’s Prada’s coat game that really gets us going. With cropped and distressed leathers in olive greens and warm browns, or extended flight jackets, tied at the waist as swathes of sequinned embroidery glisten into focus. That’s the thrill of this designer duo, taking the DNA of past collections and flipping it into something entirely different, that just so happens to look killer at every turn.

And who better than British-Irish supermodel Erin O’Connor to leave us the most awestruck? Stealing the show with a divine navy overcoat, replete with the same fuzzy armbands and trim of Jeff Goldblum’s finale look for last month’s Prada menswear show – a militaristic feel coursing out from the top of O’Connor’s sharp shoulders all the way down to her strappy seafoam heels. Clearly, FW22 is a uniform for the woman who even Mother Nature wouldn’t dare enrage.

GALLERYBackstage images from Prada WOMENS-FALL-WINTER-22