Mentally undressing models is not the usual activity of a fashion reviewer. We’re here to evaluate clothes, not bodies. But at Marni, the mind couldn’t help inquiring: What was happening under all those triangular, asymmetrical layers? The suspicion—hope, even—was that it might be a simple, anchoring slip, as the back views of some of Consuelo Castiglioni’s looks gave a glimpse of satin and straps. From the front, the rigid leather and ponyskin camisole-like aprons and tunics of her first outfits seemed a clue that she was presenting an abstracted thought about the key garment of the season. Later on, the shape reappeared—at times as long dresses in oversize sport mesh, other times as plain wool structures with geometric chunks cut out of the skirts—and always amongst assemblages of other garments. That adds up to a lot to put on, all at once.
Marni is a brand with a woman-friendly reputation for color and print, and this collection did have plenty of it. Castiglioni proved her eye for the right orange red, tobacco brown, and bottle green, which few designers would dare place in the same collection as egg yolk yellow, primary blue, and shell pink. But it was with her giant leaf prints on graceful elongated tunics over fluid trousers that the collection really hit its stride. It was then that the anxious viewer stopped worrying about what it would feel like to manage all those semi-garments and began to appreciate the chic neo-moderne metal and dangly acetate earrings and chunky lacquer bracelets that are such a Marni draw. No one will ever want this brand to go minimalist, but when Castiglioni shows a little less, she makes her customers want her more. Written by Sarah Mower for Vogue.com