After Fausto Puglisi finished the first runway show for his signature brand, the stream of well wishers backstage seemed never ending. At one point, with Anna Dello Russo and Giovanna Battaglia leading the crowd, the room burst into a spontaneous round of applause and cheers of delight.
The Italian contingent, and fashion in general, should be rejoicing, for between Puglisi, Marco de Vincenzo and Gabriele Colangelo, Milan finally seems to be getting a new lease on sartorial life.
Each designer has their own unique vision of fashion. And while his contemporaries have a more understated approach, with a real focus on textile development or treatment, Puglisi is bold and brash in a way that only the Italians seem to be able to pull off. This is a designer who was able to create a collection that was equal parts rock n roll and elegant. Which is not an easy trick to master by any stretch of the imagination.
He succeeded in this by breaking the collection into two distinctive silhouettes. Short, stand away from the body skirts paired with fitted tops and often crystal incrusted leather perfecto jackets and their down to the ground opposite, which showed up with long sleeve shirts and quilted jackets.
Though a cleaver palm tree motif (that appeared big and small, crafted out of gilded crystals, or featured on accessories) and a strong color palette of red, blue, yellow and pink- along with black and white- the designer was able to meld his two worlds into one cohesive collection.
Now lets see if he can save the Emanuel Ungaro brand, that he recently was hired to revive, next week in Paris.