MILAN (AP) — In a season full of change, one thing was constant: Giorgio Armani remained the anchor of Milan Fashion Week, closing the four days of previews on Monday.
While many of his colleagues took runway breaks or contemplated merging their menswear and womenswear previews going forward, it was Armani who got the last word, this time holding sway alone on the final day. Still, Armani lamented, not for the first time, that it was time to shake that up.
"I am the last one showing, alone. But it doesn't have to be me at all costs," he told Italian reporters after the show.
Here are some of the highlights as the men's preview shows were wrapping up in Milan:
The four days of menswear shows boasted a raft of celebrity sightings. Jessica Chastain was spotted backstage at Prada, wearing a floral sundress, along with Milla Jovovich, while Ethan Peck was head-to-toe Salvatore Ferragamo in a tan linen suit and Tramezza lace-up shoes.
Asian stars are increasingly making Milan a habit, with Chinese actor Jiang Jin Fu attracting fans to Fendi while compatriots Han DongJun and Huang Jing Yu were on hand at Dolce & Gabbana. Perhaps the most excitement was generated by social media sensation Cameron Dallas, whose fans swarmed the Dolce & Gabbana venue.
Kevin Spacey and Ricky Martin took front row seats for Armani's show, with Spacey sharing comments throughout the runway show with the designer's niece, Roberta Armani.
Spacey wore a dark tailored suit while Martin opted for a more casual zipper-front tunic-style light blue top over gray pleated trousers and a pair of Armani sunglasses.
"I've been protected by him in many ways," Martin said of Armani going into the show. "I'm very happy to be here and celebrate his art."
Tried-and-true Giorgio Armani stuck to his formula of clean lines and subtle innovation for next spring and summer's menswear looks. Armani stands firm against trends that risk the ridiculous.
Buttons cinched the looks that were anything but button-down. As a rule, on jackets, just one was fastened at a time for a casual feel. Buttons fastened at the cuff of roomy trousers, gently punctuating the line. And button flies created an old-fashioned appeal on high-waist light linen pants.
In fact, the collection had both an air of nostalgia for a bygone dandy era, while the softness of the silhouette maintained a sleek modernity. Deconstructed jackets clung to the body with one, two or three buttons, always super-light, out of cotton or linen. They were paired with wide trousers and silken blouses. Armani said in notes that the surface of garments were treated to look worn and distressed, evoking "a style that crosses into other cultures."
A vertically stripped jacket with a rolled collar got a round of applause, as did a T-shirt with a washed out print of the designer's face.
The collection included prints, such as a repeating hexagon pattern that recalled Middle Eastern tiles, but the softness of the colors never overwhelmed the largely monochrome effect of the collection. The palette was mostly sun-washed neutral tones with some Pompeian red accents.
The leather footwear had rubberized soles, some models with fringe. There were no sandals, which were ubiquitous elsewhere, giving the collection a metropolitan grounding. Hats included brimmed versions and more casual bucket hats.