Italian fashion is not about approachability. A Gucci girl is not someone who you see on the street and immediately want to know. She’s someone you see on the street and gawk at because you never realized anyone could actually look good in satin pants.
In Milan, more than anywhere else, you are reminded that fashion is expensive, and that it takes a special kind of person (the ones with trust funds + legs that never end) to make a leather bathing suit look good. London is quirky, Paris is sensational, New York is commercial, and Milan is downright intimidating.
There are exceptions -Marni’s Spring 2010 collection was sweet, if not a bit frumpy, and I adored the draped knits at Missoni, dripping with strings of pearls and fabulous slashes of silk. But Prada and Gucci’s shows were, as usual, suitable only for a Bond girl before she jet sets off to Monte Carlo.
Though all designers are worried about their profits, in Milan at least, they’re still counting on the power of the very wealthy and the very beautiful.