There was a breath of new life at WHITE SHOW Man & Woman, an edition refreshed by new projects, emerging designers and, for the first time, the WHITE STREET MARKET, a special event dedicated to sportswear and streetwear.
WHITE SHOW is not only the most important fair for fashion in Italy and highly renowned in the international panorama, but a real occasion to see the collections of many interesting avant-garde and emerging brands, giving a look to the hottest fashion trends of the moment.
From streetwear to sport-couture and with the presence of international brands, White Show was a complete overview on what’s new now in the fashion market. Here the most interesting and innovative brands and events seen at White Show.
WHITE STREET MARKET
For the first time WHITE SHOW hosted WHITE STREET MARKET, a new project to bring the last trends of streetwear and athletic apparel to the attention of international buyers, with a rich series of events that wanted to coniugate the commercial and the funny sides of fashion. To enterain public and professionals, there were a lot of happenings, workshops, exhibitions, exclusive screenings and music parties.
|Charity auction Ground Zero Project
Worthy of note there was the beautiful also if small exhibition “Within the subcultures” in partnership with Getty Images and the screening of the documentary “Obey Giant”, as well as the series of talks organized to bring together brands and public around important arguments like the future of technology and the sustainable fashion.
|“Within the subcultures” exhibition at White Street Market
About these last theme I was particularly impressed by a talk with the great Marina Spadafora, one of the milestones of Italian style and country coordinator of Fashion Revolution Italia, and a group of young fashion entrepreneurs who are inventing new ways to produce and sell clothing preserving our planet: Wrad makes cotton t-shirt dying with innovative techniques using mint or graphite; Orange Fiber produces a new type of fabrics using the fiber of the oranges; Vegea realized eco-leather from the scraps generated by the wine production using the grape pips; VIC Very Important Choice is a new online shop for sustainable fashion to buy or rent clothing and accessories; Made-By it’s an organization born to improve the working and social conditions in the fashion industry.
The Night Novel represented a real surprise in the exhibition of street wear brands. The menswear brand, founded by two young designers with an educational background in architecture Davide Maria Zema and Feancesco Moggi, proposed rigorous proportions, geometrical lines and beautiful overcoats and trench coats playing with different fabrics and details, like the long strings with buckles.
At the Basement zone of White SuperStudio Più the first designer I met was one of my favorite of the new wave of Italian Design, Lucio Vanotti, who presented his SS 19 men’s collection inspired by the geometric pattern of Bauhaus conceptually mixed with the oversize proportions and the mood of hip-hop culture, with a delicious color palette of violet, lilac and red tones.
For the jackets by Ermanno Gallamini was love at first sight. Made with different pieces taken from old military tents mixed with traditional male fabrics, each jacket is really OOAK and the final result goes beyond the concept of vintage to tell a own tale.
|Jacket by Ermanno Gallamini
To Miaoran was dedicated a large space in the Basement. This Chinese-born-Milan-adopted designer is becoming even more recognizable each passing season and now presented a colorful collection with stylized robot prints and embroideries, metallic effects and technical fabrics.
The minimal shapes of the artisanal bags by Trakatan stood out in the white background of the industrial set of the Basement, with their pure colors, the simple lines, the beautiful leathers, the handcrafted details and the concept of practicality that are at the base of this brand.
In the large exhibition space of Via Tortona 27 the first two brands which caught my attention come from Japan. Hideaki Shikama with his ethically focused brand Children of Discordance transformed the classic shapes of trech coat with patchwork techniques and graffiti. Poliquant by the designer Jun Sugita, who studied at Istituto Marangoni and Istituto Secoli, reinvented the Japanese prints with carps presenting a sportwear collection multifunctional, with pockets that can be replaced and transformed.
|Trench coats by Children of Discordance
|Carps print by Poliquant
A touch of Haute Couture was given by Xuan Paris, a Paris based label by the talented Dutch-Vietnamese designer Xuan-Thu Nguyen. She presented her ready-to-wear collection in which is clear the recall to all the unique allure and elegance of Haute Couture. Poetic, dreamy and delicate are the hundreds of frills, the delicious color palette and the sophisticated petals of leather handly embroidered on a wonderful jacket.
|Xuan Paris ready to wear collection
Another intersting international reality was Elsewhere, from China, a menswear brand with a very contemporary mood. Mixing technology with the classic pieces of male wardrobe, the collection is futurible in the use of reflective textiles and digital-pattern prints, acquiring a sense of clean moderntity without forgetting the elegance.
|Reflective jacket by Elsewhere
The experimentation carried out by Au197Sm is something really particular. The brand, launched two years ago by Paola Emilia Monachesi, uses a unique technique with international patent to fuse gold and other precious metals directly on the surface of fabrics, creating incredible textures halfway between the most avant-garde technology and the Haute Couture luxury. The collection entitled “Couture collides nano technology” is a visual game of empty spaces, embossed textures and reflection of shiny metals mixed with a sporty attitude really modern.
|Collection by Au127Sm
Speaking about a more sporty attitude, I was attracted by four brands: Fade Out Label, by Andrea Bonfini and Nicola Gomiero, focused on recycled denim and techno fabrics reinterpreted with patchworks techniques and innovative shapes; Maxime Hernandez is a sport-couture brand born in 2015 by the creative minds of Quentin Hernandez and Maxime Tiliouine, based in New York but with the production in Italy, which presented a dynamic collection with eye-catching signalling prints; Public Makes Image is really glam and with a strong image, thanks to the dynamic and bright personality of the designer Liene Grinberga, who proposed a mix of street culture and disco glam (I loved the sequin short dresses and the embroidered ribbon on workwear inspired printed coats); the hyper-visionary approach of the brand Hi On Life, a Swedish-born brand produced in Ghana by local artisans, was really eye-catching for the 80s mood of the extravagant and iconic prints, but also for the innovative way in which the label reiterpreted the shape of the past to make something completely new.
|Fade Out Label, Maxime Hernandez, Public Makes Image and Hi On Life
For the accessories, there were a lot of noteworthy brands. The first I’ve seen was Eatable, a Japanese label of handmade bags with a sustainable philosophy: all the bags are made with artisanal techniques using natural materials, like for the hand-sculpeted handles and buckles, and bio-dying processes.
|Bag by Eatable
The same attention for the environment is that of Meraky, an Italian brand born from the passion of two friends, Emilia and Rosaria, and from their idea to re-use the coffee package to produce unique bags weaving them together the stripes of printed plastic, each of which has a unique and unrepeatable pattern.
|Sustainable bag by Meraky
Mua Mua Dolls is the higly-recognizable and now famous brand born by the unbridled and irreverent fantasy of Ludovica Virga, Italian designer who lives in Bali. Her starting point were the small crochet dolls depicting the most iconic characters of fashion world, like Karl Lagerfeld, Chanel or Anne Wintour. Now the collection is complete, from bags to apparel, always interpreted with a deep sense of irony and joy of life.
|House of Mua Mua
Arche bets on comfort. This historical French brand presented the summer and fall collections of female shoes, more colored the first, darker the secons, but both with unusual shapes, intriguing cuts and technical details clearly inspired by the world of design.
|Shoes by Arche
Special guest of the event was the English designer Matthew Miller, recently winner of the International Woolmark Prize (here the article), a very kindly designer with an avant-garde and green approach. Using “The Loop”, an innovative system to recycle textile waste to produce high-quality yarns and fabrics, Miller creates garments made to be durable and totally new. Very attractive at first sight are the neon colors of sweetshirts and the sparkling metallic effects of jackets, while interesting are the details inspired by workwear.
|Matthew Miller special guest of White Show
Abasi & Rosborough, presented in exclusive a preview of their next summer 2019 collection. The design duo, formed by Abdul Abasi and Greg Rosborough, lives and works in New York after studied at FIT. In only 5 years since the first appearance this label was able to reach important targets and be noted by the international market. The collection entitled “Desert Phantom” is inspired by the Native Americans, represented by the geometrical patterns of the prints, with influences also from Japanese culture in the study of the shapes and the overall aspect.
|Preview of the spring/summer 2019 collection by Abasi & Rosborough
A sign warned against the danger. Passing through enormous semi-transparent tarps from the roof to the ground, I arrived in another time, in 1969, between astronauts and moon land, with the voices from Cape Canaveral in the background. Ih Nom Uh Nit, a no-name brand born in 2015, created a very special installation to showcase the male collection which revisited the iconic elements of late Sixties sportwear and pop culture for modern space explorers.
|Installation by Ih Nom Uh Nit
|Creation by Ih Nom Uh Nit
Sometimes happens to see something so powerful and strong to stop astonished. That’s was happened to me in front of the incredible jackets and coats by Sagittaire A. Admittedly, I have a real passion for jackets in general, but those were really particular. Destroyed and recontructed replacing parts with plastic, burning edges, sewing with large hand-stitches and placing disturbing prints. The brand, born in 2017 by a collective of designers, is surely one of the most interesting thing I’ve seen at White Show.
|Cutting-edge jackets by Sagittaire A
And for all the passionate of latest trends, nothing is better than taking a look to the most curated and professional trend books presented by Book Village, a library in Milan specialized in fashion publications. A real window opened on the future, among pages of textile research, new color combinations and aesthetic visions.