Prada AW16: 3 Things To Know

Corsets as belts, trinkets aplenty and practical parkas at Prada

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‘[It’s all] put together by this idea of the vagabond,’ Miuccia Prada explained backstage at her autumn/winter 16 show while talking a small group of journalists through her new woman for the season.

‘She’s a vagabond through life,’ she adds. Aren’t we all? Fashion is currently in a refreshing, energising moment in which it’s celebrating the boldly individual and the unapologetically eclectic. And yet at the same time, the industry is stumbling through what is arguably the most disruption it has seen in decades.

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Prada Fall/Winter 2016 #pradafw16

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We’re living in exciting, tumultuous times. And as fashion reflects life, the change is bound to trickle down to our wardrobes.

At Prada, that sense of chaos translated into this kind of skewed lady, an idea we saw a lot of for spring/summer and one we're exploring a lot in the pages of ELLE magazine. But Prada is the architect of this idea — and she reminded us of that by advancing her vision even further.

Prada Fall/Winter 2016 #pradafw16

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Prada said she wanted to explore the full picture of modern womanhood: ‘I think we need to understand who we are now, and so I think maybe it’s useful to look back on the different characteristics, the moments — love, no love, sexy, pain, happiness, the different genre of woman…’ Here, we recap the game-changing moments that are destined to influence your closet.

1) Corsets: The new belt?

A look from the #PradaFW16 Women's Show. #mfw

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The restrictive, binding corset has a controversial role in women’s wear history and has been popping up in the collections as of late but with a modern, dare we say, empowering spin.

Victoria Beckham made them soft and pliable in New York, Simone Rocha left them open, layered over voluminous dresses in London, and Prada produced them in leather and used them as clever and decorative ways to cinch the waists of full tops, coats and dresses, much as you would with a belt.

A look from the #PradaFW16 Women's Show. #mfw

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In addition to her wild layering, the corsets were also the element that gave a rebellious, sexed-up edge to her pretty, brocade Fifties dresses and tailored coats.

2) A hoarder’s paradise

A look from the #PradaFW16 Women's Show. #mfw

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Imagine you scavenged through your grandmother’s attic, put on the coat and all the jewels and brooches, and that’s sort of what you have for autumn/winter at many of the shows we’ve seen so far. It’s the idea of that eccentric lady that we saw so much of for spring/summer, but taken up a notch.

Prada Fall/Winter 2016 #pradafw16

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There’s something a little unhinged and undone about the women we’re seeing at shows such as Christopher Kane, Alexander McQueen and Simone Rocha. At Prada, she wore tiny little coin purses, miniature leather books and charms, sometimes attached in small clusters to her collar and other times dangling from her bag.

It was advanced-level layering, with the accessories adding a sense of wildness.

3) Function as fashion

A look from the #PradaFW16 Women's Show. #mfw

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If you’re wondering what might have the biggest impact on your wardrobe, it’s this: Mixed in with all the lush fabrics — the velvets, silks and brocades — Prada showed a series of practical anoraks and parkas in navy and army green with quilted panels in bright turquoise and red. Call it Prada for everyday wear.

A look from the #PradaFW16 Women's Show. #mfw

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Crystal-embellished combat boots, now a bona fide microtrend for the season, also made an appearance here and contributed to the utilitarian undercurrent running through the collection. We’re placing bets that both of these easy-to-wear ideas will trickle their way down to the high street.  '

She can be sexy, she can be [sporty],’ Prada explained. ‘Each piece was a symbol of some kind of some kind of woman.’

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