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M: Alex Badia's Show Diaries 2014

Hello, Kanye! My cappuccino-driven tour of the new collections, feat. John Varvatos, Ermenegildo Zegna, Versace, Gucci, Armani, and Thom Browne.

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Alex Badia

Photo By Barry Blitt

Gene Simmons

Photo By Barry Blitt

Future's diamond necklace

Photo By Barry Blitt

Dirty shoes at Corneliani.

Photo By Barry Blitt

Appeared In
Special Issue
Menswear issue M Spring 2014

Day One—Milan


Gray morning. Vespas and Fiats whiz down Corso Vittorio Emanuele II. Along with photographers, models, dressers, stylists, fashion groupies, Italian-television personalities, and businesspeople, I step into the 9:30 a.m. Corneliani show…


And so begins Milan fashion week 2014…


The Corneliani people like to trick things out when it comes to the set. Today is no different: A massive amount of dirt covers the floor! Perhaps it is meant to signal the collection’s earthy look, but a few of us end up with dirty shoes. The things we do for fashion. The collection that passes before our eyes is young and solid…


At the Ermenegildo Zegna show, we witness the sophomore collection from master of elegance Stefano Pilati. He hits us with a collection heavy on softly constructed three-piece suits beneath quilted bomber jackets, oversize coats (a Pilati specialty), and fluffy cashmere sweaters…


I am in major need of cappuccino (I am totally addicted, btw), and so the M team stops at a café, where we run into notable Milan fashionista Anna Dello Russo and her lovely assistant, Carlotta Oddi. Both are wearing matching Carven (current season) bubblegum-pink statement coats and chunky Prada shoes. (Should I be coordinating my outfits with my assistant?)…


My glance is fixed on plump pastries behind the glass. Luckily, I am able to stop myself from indulging in a major carb load. Emotional eating is never the answer…


Seated next to me at the Costume National show is an Italian-television journalist who has brought along his Jack Russell terrier, named Fedra. Believe it or not, the man and his dog are wearing perfectly matching outfits. (What is going on?) Every time a model struts by, a British editor seated behind me barks softly. Thank God for British humor…


The MSGM collection has “truth” as its theme. Backstage, I ask designer Massimo Giorgetti if he has ever been lied to. “Yes, of course!” he answers. Good to know I am not the only one with that bit of baggage…
Next up is, John Varvatos, feat. an appearance by Kiss, in full leather regalia, alongside John himself. They take their bows as the crowd goes mad; iPhones emerge from pockets in a crazed Instagram race. If you think Miley Cyrus knows how to work a tongue, you haven’t seen Gene Simmons!


Neil Barrett unveils a strong collection, using neoprene as a core material and reinventing menswear staples such as the sweatshirt and toggle coat…


At the Versace show, models who look very Village People walk the stage. Things get even better with the appearance of chaps and rhinestone codpieces…


A who’s who of fashion crowds the GQ party, but the place has terrible feng shui: At times, you are trapped with someone who won’t shut up. The football player Victor Cruz looks great in Calvin Klein. The rapper Future is talking, but I can’t hear what he’s saying, because I can’t take my eyes off his diamond necklaces. They are sort of classy…

Day Two—Milan


I rush to Bottega Veneta through a thick morning fog. The collection is a blend of chic and sporty in a deep fall color palette. When I win the Lotto, I will buy every piece…


There is a major street-style scene outside the Salvatore Ferragamo show. The photographers are going mad, and I am under the impression that I am having a moment in my burgundy Marni look, when I realize the cameras are focused on a high-profile lady fashion blogger standing behind me…


Inside, Massimiliano Giornetti presents an elegant collection of traditional, youthful tailored clothing. I realize that I do not miss the athletic references from last season. It all seems so 2013…


Calvin Klein is known almost as much for its casting as for its clothes. Fifteen of today’s catwalk models are exclusive to the brand, and the leading man on the runway, Pier-Gabriel Lajoie, had a previous career as a featured player in naughty films. (Text me, Pier-Gabriel.) Italo Zucchelli sends out an array of bulky neoprene sweatshirts with the brand’s perfume names emblazoned across the front (Eternity, Obsession, Escape). There are also lamé pants like the kind I used to wear to London raves (but let’s not talk about my age)…


We are all excited for Missoni, where Angela Missoni offers an updated version of the brand’s hippie-chic look. Among the highlights are relaxed knitted suits, elongated cardigans, slouchy pants, and furry shoes…
At Prada, the metallic set is ominous. I feel a bit scared. The clothes suggest a new direction: Miuccia Prada pulls off a marvelous incongruity—formfitting blazers and topcoats that seem to flow…


 Thom Browne invites us into a kind of gentleman’s club at Moncler Gamme Bleu, packed with models. It is an explosion of argyle. Even the ottomans are argyle. The collection is top-notch Thom…

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