After a long 18 months behind the mask, the Fall/Winter 2021 season heralded the return to visibility with bright colors, geometric shapes, and light-catching metallics. One exhausted from trauma, the post-vaccine world leans into a campy playfulness-encouraging us to peacock in a reemerging world. Courrèges played with gems, taking the Euphoric trend to a pared-back simple application for rookie make-up aficionados. At the same time, Versace’s usage of blue, metallic, extended wing eyescapes pandered to the fearless (and skilled).
An interesting entanglement of time, both past and future, found its way to the runway-possibly a reflection of pandemic escapism. Ferragamo’s science fiction-inspired runway sent down a parade of fully body-painted/semi-nude silver models, and Giambattista Valli's tangerine accented, black and silver eye looks gave us glimpses of extra-terrestrial, all while incorporating three of the most prominent color trends into a single look. Counter to galactic futurism, brands such as Vivienne Westwood, Paco Rabanne, and Erdem leaned into retro-inspired beauty, taking us on a journey from the 1920s silent-film era to Andy Warhol’s The Factory in 1980s New York. Blush in highly pigmented tangerine popped up, while black geometric liner plucked from The Queens Gambit made its runway return. And, lastly, diamond body embellishments racked up a designer following-signaling to invest in quality eyelash glue for at-home precision placement. In general, drama ruled, while subtlety was largely left behind.
What once was the season for muted terracotta reds and simple pencil brown liner has been turned on its head. It’s all about loud, singing from the streets, embracing our most eccentric instincts-not necessarily about precision, this Fall is all about experimentation.