Maybe Mr. Armani, as his employees lovingly call him, is just as excited for the Great Gatsby as we are. There could be no question as to what decade the designer was mining for fall 2013: Between the cloche hats, subtle nods to orientalism, and drop waist silhouette on eveningwear, the roaring twenties were alive and well at the Emporio Armani show on Saturday.
Though we're not sure the collection would really be up Daisy Buchanan's alley. It looked more like what we imagine the well-traveled, convention-bucking Lady Brett Ashley from the Sun Also Rises would wear.
Aside from a handful of dainty frocks in pale peach and green, the collection was heavily rooted in menswear, with several suit-inspired looks. Pants and bermuda-length shorts were baggy and boxy, and paired with oversized shirts and perfectly-tailored blazers. A grouping of paisley looks--loose pajama-esque pants worn with a matching kaftan dress or grey outerwear; flippy paisley skirts with velvet dinner jackets; long paisley scarves with oversized suits--brought to mind a bourgeois traveller back from an adventure in India and nodded to the collection's name, Kajal.
The palette mostly stuck to Easter pastels and neutrals--that is until the eveningwear. Those were done up in sumptuous jewel tone velvet. As elsewhere in the collection, but particularly in the evening category, Armani seemed to be playing with controlled volume, creating exaggerated shapes on shorts, and skirts, and tempering it with architectural preciseness on top. This came to a crescendo in the final looks, particularly those with stiffly wrapped velvet at the top.
Because I was lucky enough to go backstage, I got to see all the collection's details. The loafers, which you could only glimpse on the runway, were even better up close. I'm kind of obsessed.