Fendi redefined the meaning of vintage for SS16.
Karl Largergeld and Silvia Fendi looked both forwards and backwards for their SS16 collection: Tudor-meets-Edwardian-meets-modern would be the succinct way to put it. The key design motif was probably the high collar married with big sleeves which gave things a distinctly old-fashioned vibe. The combination appeared on plenty of dresses, blouses and even a leather bomber jacket. If it this sounds a bit buttoned-up then fret not, there was an abundance of flesh-revealing cut-outs to heat things up a little.
Voluminous puffs also contributed heavily to that Tudor court atmosphere: shoulders, trouser legs, sleeve openings and necklines were all pleated and inflated to create extremely slouchy, very bold clothing that wore its historical influences on its sleeve. Smocking – that embroidery method used to gather fabric so that it stretches and contracts – not just at cuffs but also on waists was responsible for much of this antiquated fullness, though one of the most wearable pieces, denim pantaloons, made excellent use of smocking at the hem.
Despite its cherry-picking of techniques from days of yore, this was still a contemporary collection. In fact, perhaps its unusual range of sources made it, ironically, more progressive than most: the perennially modern mini playsuit found itself touched with that pleating which transmuted it into some beautifully unique hybrid. Elsewhere, what looked like woven leather found itself worn like a breastplate of armour in the middle of a widow-black dress which, when combined with floral-strapped bags, made for a fearsome-yet-feminine end to a defiantly original collection. When it comes to Karl, who would expect any less?
Words: Benji Walters