Prada just presented its FW21 womenswear collection by Miuccia Prada and Raf Simons, and it probably saw the brand at its most ‘Prada-ness’.
The collection was presented in a similar environment as the power duo’s Men’s FW21 offering, again designed by Rem Koolhas and OMA. Models walked through the empty spaces, with walls and floors covered in either fur, marble or simply nothing but statement colours. The textures and colours either matched the clothing, giving the models camouflage coverage or in contrast clashed and made them stand out. The sound of Plastikman AKA Richie Hawtin’s pulsating techno beats carried models in slicked back hairstyles and minimal makeup and jewellery room to room.
The collection itself combined boxy, masculine tailoring with colourful and psychedelic designs. Blazers with matching skirts were worn over geometric patterned full bodysuits or combined with bold skin-tight knee-high boots. Prada did not hold back on its outwear, showcasing double-breasted coats in a number of different materials and colours including a grey marbled fur iteration. One of the keys that caught our eyes were the fuzzy open-jackets, which required models to hold around them like elegant 1950’s capes.
Again, similar to their menswear collection, there were many pieces that brought Raf Simons’ recognisable touch such as bomber jackets, chunky knits and the rolled-up blazer. This time however, it felt as though Simons’ influence was kept in line, merging with the Prada aesthetic rather than appearing as overpowering. The Prada logo again was featured heavily, with the eponymous triangle being stitched onto the backs of dresses as well as appearing as pockets being affixed onto gloves and onto the sleeves of bomber jackets. Miuccia Prada seems to have firmly changed her mind about the oversized Prada buttons as they appeared on a range of outerwear pieces.
Speaking of the collection Prada wrote that it “explores the space that exists between conventional polar opposites- the point between simplicity and complexity, elegance and practicality, limitation and release, transmuted.”
Following the show, Miuccia Prada and Raf Simons took part in their third post-show Q&A, this time moderated by Derek Blasberg. Among the guests were writer and producer Lee Daniels, Richie Hawtin, Marc Jacobs, Rem Koolhaas and actress Hunter Schafer. The group of creatives discussed not only the collection but what Prada-ness meant to them. Marc Jacobs summed it up perfectly stating “Prada-ness is Mrs Prada. I understand that there is something intrinsic in this collaboration with Raf but also what we know of Prada is this incredible taste and eye for culture, intelligence, sense of style and it’s a love for fashion. The Prada-ness is Mrs Prada.”
While the FW21 womenswear collection certainly bore similarities to its menswear counterpart, it was able to find a middle ground between the two legendary designers. The three final looks perfectly demonstrate this, portraying what femininity and glamour look like to the duo. The collaborative efforts between them showcase a perfect amalgamation of Prada’s legacy as it does Simons’ counter-culture designs.
Watch the full show below.