In the neoclassical Sala delle Cariatidi of Palazzo Reale, in the heart of Milan’s Piazza Duomo, Salvatore Ferragamo debuts its Autumn/Winter 2022 collection. In an immersive setting, inspired by sculpting light artworks, the brand presents its new men’s and women’s accessories and ready-to-wear collection. Upon entering, guests are introduced to accessories through circles of colours and passages of lights.
As they make their way through the presentation, they discover the ready-to-wear collection, where islands of colourful perspex cubes, with bright light effects, artfully contrast with the eternal and decadent splendor of the venue. At the end of the path, the video of the collection brings the audience into a parallel world to engage with the limits of the eye’s perception.
The dawn of the 2020s has accelerated a global vibe shift towards casualisation. World events and new generational values have changed habits, propelling the decline of tailoring and eveningwear – aka “formalwear” – in favour of a greater focus on the “informal”. For Autumn/Winter 2022 Salvatore Ferragamo leans into that change, while applying one crucial caveat: this is a collection built to demonstrate that clothes that are categorically “casual” can be made, chosen and worn with as much care, discernment, craft and irony as any evening gown or tuxedo. Ferragamo deconstructs the codes of “casual” to then rebuild them in a spirit of liberated precision and fluid expression, with codes shared between the genders.
Womenswear pieces feature dramatic ruffles, an evening wear staple, but expressed in versatile knit. A traditional evening wear shape is interpreted unconventionally in supple strips of shaved by-product shearling. A knit bodysuit, inherently simple, is worn underneath a bonded leather mini skirt. A trench incorporates a wrap belt and wrap scarf into its structure to create a versatile garment wearable in multiple ways.
In Menswear the skeleton of a formal silhouette is retained but unnecessary complexity pared back in softly constructed jackets with inserted gilets. Gancini quilted olive parkas, pullovers and sweatshirts in sustainable nylon integrate the codes of Ferragamo in material substance of technical garments. Both genders access upgraded athleisure via camel hair wool sweatpants, cardigans and sweaters delivered with artisanal detailing. And both genders access an ironic and eye-opening playfulness focused on scale and proportion, in which wide-aperture exaggerated striping and unorthodox patching combine to replace the “smartness” of formality with the irony and intelligence of “informality”. These are looks designed to unlock fresh attitudes and contemporary character.
Ferragamo refashions its icons to amplify a casual classicism. The Ferragamo Studio bag is presented in new sizes and materials including blown-up crocodile effect pressed relief, warping the onlooker’s sense of scale. A soft bucket bag is added to the line, featuring the signature Gancini closure and a studded base. It is fashioned of grainy calf in the season’s range of Italianate colors: Ghiacciaio Blue, Nebbia Green, Agrifoglio Blue, Rafia, Aghi Green, and Amaretti Pink.
Woven cuoio and cord versions demonstrate the craft and know-how that is at Ferragamo’s core. A new bag design comes in a half-moon shape with a selleria finish: this features the substantial leather-clad chain which also serves as a jewelry accent across the collection.
New unisex retro running styles come with a rainbow-layer sole that refers to Salvatore Ferragamo’s iconic 1938 Rainbow shoe. Snow boots, moccasins and hikers feature ultralight lug soles, and subtly volumised proportions in richly tactile calfskin. The iconic Gancini hardware is applied to these and a new combat boot, placed for ironic and surprising effect.