I’ve Just Been to Milan—These Are the 6 Trends Everyone’s Talking About

I've Just Been to Milan—These Are the 6 Trends Everyone's Talking About

Sabato de Sardo’s debut Gucci Ancora collection for spring/summer 2024.

Last week was a big one in Milan, but the clothes? Small. Teeny tiny. Minuscule! In essence, 2024 is primed to be a #hotpantsummer. The power moves at some of fashion’s most adored brands kept every editor, stylist, influencer and PR on their toes—Gucci’s hotly anticipated debut from new creative director Sabato de Sardo ushered in a palette cleanser of clean lines, subdued colours, ultra-luxe but understated fabrics and a lot more chat about a grey hoodie than I’ve ever heard.

Meanwhile, Peter Hawkings’ first line for Tom Ford played into the codes of the founder, with silky shirts unbuttoned to the navel, slim-fit tailoring and ultra-glam eveningwear. Both Gucci and Tom Ford leaned towards the short hemlines and nearly naked aesthetic that was present all over Milan Fashion Week. 

So the trend for this kind of Milanese minimalism (ahem, not wearing much at all) was rendered in myriad ways. Barely-there, gossamer-light chiffon layers at Prada fluttered as models swept by, whilst butt-cheek-baring short-shorts proved to be the style of choice across MaxMara, Gucci, Bally and many more. Dresses were mini when covered up and maxi when practically see-through, and many looks were flourished with trails of billowing fabric, fringing, neck-ties or trains in order to make as good an entrance as an exit.

The drama didn’t end there, of course. Crystals abounded across the Italian collections (the volume of sparkly shoes I witnessed alone was enough to power a Barbie sequel), colours were pastel-based but somehow punchy, and tailoring came in strong with nipped-in waists and sharp shoulders (Versace being the leader here). Keep strolling for the MFW trends I think will influence our wardrobes come next summer, if not sooner. 

Thanks to the quiet-luxury times we’re living in, the fashion world has been a little beige of late. But next year’s summer’s palette according to the Italians is looking very, very pretty—even good enough to eat. From lavenders and lilacs (the purple trend lingers on from London) through to baby blues, pistachio greens, soft corals and playful pinks, these are pastels but not quite as you know them, thanks to their high levels of saturation.

MaxMara sent out casual looks in these vibrant pastels and combined slightly different shades together for a chic effect.

Ferragamo’s Maximilian Davis is known for his block colours, and this stunning blue-on-blue formula will undoubtedly be popular next summer.

Del Core’s lavendar looks matched the mauve catwalk, but I liked the shock of red thrown in with the accessories—a colour idea I also saw all over the streets of Milan.

Donatella Versace put forward the concept this season that women can wear pastels and still be powerful, and she’s not wrong. The Versace colour palette spanned baby blue, sweet pink, lime and sherbet yellow in all manner of silhouettes and finishes, but it was these little twinsets worn with silky shorts that really piqued my attention.

Emporio Armani’s bohemian glamour lives on for spring/summer 2024 in the prettiest of pink and purple hues.

If fashion’s ongoing penchant for micro-mini skirts has left you wanting more, then next season’s revealing hot pants could be the answer. They won’t be to everyone’s liking, but they will make themselves known considering just how omnipresent they were across the catwalks.

The cheekiest—and perhaps most iconic—look from Gucci’s Ancora collection will be in high demand from stylists and celebrities next year.

Bally’s leather tailoring was made all the edgier by its new creative director Simone Bellotti introducing the shortest of shorts alongside blazers and flats.

MaxMara’s knitted pants were counterbalanced by oversized knits and classic heels.

A very Tom Ford formula from Peter Hawkings’ debut offering: velvet, tailoring, silk and plenty of leg.

Gucci’s Sabato de Sardo showcased micro shorts in every fabric, colour and outfit combination you could think of. 

If it’s not chiffon, organza or voile, I’m not interested! Designers created dream-like movement out of these super-fine fabrics by crafting trains, tentacles, fringing and more. Providing an interesting alternative to the stricter tailored silhouettes also on the runways, this idea often came in the form of loose dresses. These billowing styles were nothing but romantic and looked like a joy to wear.

Prada’s ultra-fine swathes of pastel chiffon looked magical on the runway.

Sportmax introduced voile trains to otherwise casual shapes to add drama.

Roberto Cavalli’s look for spring/summer 2024 is all about cascading shapes, fringing, scarves and feathers that swoosh by.

Alberta Ferretti showcased a series of stunning maxi dresses in the lightest of silks—each one quivered beautifully in the breeze, but it was this style with the neck-tie that I loved the most.

Blumarine took a young, fun take on the trend with this fluttering ruffled train on a skimpy dress.

If there’s one key item I spied on both Milano’s best dressed women and the runways, it’s the oversized shirt. Effortless and easy to restyle depending on your personal preference, it’s a dead cert for next year (and the remainder of this one).

If I had to choose one look to buy from the runways, it’s this chic ensemble from Daniel Blazy’s Bottega Veneta. The shirt, colour, fringing and silhouette all speak to multiple trends coming out for S/S 24.

The simplicity of an elegant white shirt worn with leather trousers provided heaps of real-life inspiration over at Fendi.

Tod’s took the classic piece in another direction, eshewing button-downs in favour of a cotton poplin tunic worn over slouchy trousers.

MaxMara’s oversized shirts were tucked into form-fitting skirts and shorts—a fantastic balancing act.

Like wearing a back-to-front shirt you’ve stolen from your dad’s wardrobe, I loved this restrained-but-effective Sportmax look.

Milanese women always make an effort, and there’s an ease to the way they dress up on the daily. So it makes sense that you can throw a truckload of crystals into the mix and still come out with something that somehow manages to look casual and appropriate for everyday wear. From sparkly shoes to shimmering sack dresses, no piece was left un-bedazzled.

Lorenzo Serafini added soft tailoring to his see-through crystal pieces at Philosophy, and it just worked.

A crystal Gucci Jackie bag? You bet your bottom dollar this will be a smash next season.

Prada’s decorative details included metallic fringed belts, crystal-studded knitwear and eyelets punched into every possible piece you could imagine.

Giorgio Armani’s combination of trousers with a crystal dress worn over the top makes for great eveningwear inspiration.

Moschino showcased four collections created by four legendary stylists to celebrate the brand’s 40th anniversary. This look from Gabriella Karefa-Johnson is practically an ode to crystals.

Silhouettes vary across the board when it comes to structural points like dropped waists, hem lengths, bias cuts and volume, but oftentimes one thing did remain the same throughout Milan’s offering: strong shoulders. Whether counterbalanced by pulled-in waists or emphasised by blown-out tailoring, shoulder pads are continuing to mean business for S/S 24.

Prada’s strong shoulders were set against ultra-cinched waists and short-shorts (I told you it’s going to be a hot pants summer).

MSGM took jumbo tailoring to the max with this plaid blazer.

BOSS’s corpcore collection was all about revisiting workwear, and this look plays into that defined shoulder-to-waist ratio.

Just because shoulder pads are involved, doesn’t mean the look has to be severe—take this soft Philosophy outfit as a perfect example.

Versace’s sculpted blazers are now becoming a firm part of the brand’s modern fashion lexicon—this claret leather version was really something to behold.

Next Up: 11 London Fashion Week Trends That’ll Be Everywhere in 2024

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