Designer Kean Etro employed feathers from tip of his fedora hats to the toe of his velvet slippers in the menswear collection previewed Monday, the third day of Milan Fashion Week.
Etro turned convention on its head, opening the show with evening wear, featuring such clever interpretations as tuxedo tails adorned with feathers. Jackets also appeared in velvet — a clear Milan trend for next winter — with feathered lapels.
As the collection moved into day wear, the use of feathers became even more bold. A jacket of golden and orange feathers evoked a sunrise. An eye-popping patchwork vest of pink, black and orange feathers could easily be worn beneath Joseph's amazing Technicolor dream coat. And a red tailcoat was feathered behind in orange, peacock blue and black.
Etro said the aims was for classical looks to take flight, calling the collection "a proposal for life, soaring high and seeing the every day as a celebration of beauty."
But the designer evoked Pegasus — not Icarus — in his show notes. Lest he fly too close to the sun and get burned, Etro returned to Earth with some unfeathered and more traditional looks.
Etro also used brocade to create striking black and white outerwear, including a long cape with three-quarter length fringed sleeves. Sherling coats are clearly de rigeur for next winter, and Etro distinguished his with brocade or patchwork panels.
Like other designers, Etro is offering a broad range of outerwear, including trenches, down vests and a paisley-printed explorer jacket with multitudes of outer pockets.
The overall look was heavy on the tribal, with patterns inspired by Native Americans appeared on the backs of jackets.
Etro also made effective use of scarves, light and oversized, creating layered looks seen all over Milan runways. Fringed, scarves were worn under jackets. And in an unconventional look, a long scarf was tucked beneath a sweater stitched with feathers, to create the impression of a loin cloth, another tribal echo.
The show — which pulsated to such airborne classics as "Fly Like an Eagle," and "Volare" — ended with alternate Etro models wrapped in blankets bearing signature motifs, from an eagle, to paisley to an Aztec print.