Miuccia Prada celebrated the Miu Miu woman in all her multi-faceted, quirky and quintessentially adorable glory last week, with a pop-up private members’ club in London which played host to a restaurant manned by acclaimed guest chefs, a limited-edition boutique, cocktail mixologists and debates between industry insiders and experts. If that sounds fearsomely high-minded, slightly puzzling and cripplingly cool, it’s because that’s precisely what the Miu Miu woman is.
For spring 2013, she pairs a duchesse satin evening coat (below) with jewelled leather slip-on hippie sandals; she wears denim cut to a tailored mould, oversized, minimal and anything but jean-like. Add to that a crop-top (a crop-top!) and shattered-glass prints on slouchy, quilted separates that owe their silhouette to 1940s-era glamour but their modern feel to the weird and wonderful fabrics and finishes this designer delights in.
A true fashion visionary, Prada (Miu Miu is the sister line to her eponymous megabrand) turns trends on their heads; her will dictates what happens the following season – by which time she has almost certainly moved on, whimsically and unpredictably sailing into uncharted territories as others splash about in her wake.
The current party-season vogue for printed statement (that’s “fancy” to you and me) trousers has its roots in the Prada autumn 2012 collection, where models wore lino-print suits in difficult (that’s the polite word) shades of purple and orange. At Miu Miu, too, she showed loudly printed tailoring in 1970s-style severe and exaggerated cuts and colours: deep collars and cuffs, wide lapels, mustard.
But that’s the point. Prada designs clothes for women to exist as their own idiosyncratic and irregular ideals. That’s why she refuses to play ball when it comes to expectations or elegance. After those cropped cigarette pants and flares for autumn, her spring collections were all dresses, skirts and shorts, with nary a pair of trousers in sight.
So wear yours now and make merry for Christmas, but keep an eye out for Prada’s next move – she never does what you think she will.