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Prada Ready To Wear Spring Summer 2016 Milan

The spun sugar sweetness of last season’s Prada show melted away from memory on Thursday night as designer Miuccia Prada brought some gravitas to her cement gray catwalk with a collection that was subversively cool in its sleekly linear approach to fashion.

There was a graphic interior design element about this show. The bold bands of striping Prada used in different discordant shades, textures, and sizes came together to form boxy jackets, straight stiff skirts, and square luxe outerwear that were a study in precision and form. The dramatic visual impact was a clear reference to the tastes of the 70s, when stylistic sophistication was achieved through the striking juxtaposition of patterns and colors.

The clothing also had an inherent tension to it thanks to the way Prada offset the defined spacing of her clothing with the roundness of her accessories and embellishments. The disco ball earrings, silver sphere adorned footwear, and circular netting worn like porous short capes or dickeys about the neck all broke up the vertically lined looks. And the incorporation of Prada’s favorite round plastic paillettes as ornamentation on her eveningwear options also underlined her intrinsic need to rupture the puritanical perfection of a clean line.

This was a collection that firmly fell into the current geek chic trend that Prada originally helped birth into being back in the 1990s. But at no point did the designer look as if she was referencing her past oeuvre. This was a decidedly modern, post classic take on the idea of eccentric elegance, and a winning one at that.