“What is the Prada-ness?” was a question posed during the Q&A that followed after Prada’s Fall Winter 2021 pre-recorded show. Since its Spring Summer 2021 collection — first collaboration between Miuccia Prada and new co-creative director Raf Simons — there have been many opinions on whether there was too much of Simon’s mark or too much of Mrs Prada’s. It is befitting then, that the Fall Winter 2021 collection was titled ‘Possible Feelings II: Transmute’. This word ‘transmute’ seems to describe both the evolution of the many tropes introduced in the previous two collections co-designed by Mrs Prada and Simons, and also the union of Simons’ aesthetic with that of ‘Prada-ness’.
Related article: Review of Prada Spring Summer 2021 Collection
The jacquard knit in the form of long johns in the men’s collection was reimagined for the women’s this time as sleeves and collars on dresses and coats, skin tight sock boots, and the unexpected lining of oversized nylon bomber jackets — a signature of silhouette of Simons. The long john itself also makes an appearance, both peeking out stealthily as pops of colour, layered under skirts coats.
The set is also an extension from the men’s show, in line with Prada Group’s commitment to upcycling and donating materials from its set runway designs. Designed by Dutch architect Rem Koolhaas and AMO, the space consists of a collection of rooms that leads into each other endlessly. Sensory extremes are also brought into the same narrative: Fluffy fur walls meet cold marble floors; vivid red, purple and blue are framed by doorways of pale white. With the camera often following models closely from a third party’s perspective, the experience feels almost computer generated, like wandering inside a virtual reality game.
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‘We wanted this space to physically relate…to the clothes and to the intentions we had for the collection’, says Simons at the after show Q&A (attendees include Mrs Prada, Marc Jacobs, Koolhaas, filmmaker Lee Daniels, actress Hunter Schafer, and musician Richie Hawtin aka Plastikman, who composed the music for the show). Indeed, this juxtaposition of tactile feelings (as we imagine them in front of our computer screens), is reflected in the pairing of sequins against fur, fur against nylon, and nylon against velvet. The ‘rectilinear’ wraps — rendered in black for the Spring Summer 2021 collection — are now fur-lined with sequins (and vice versa). The triangular Prada logo can also be seen on mini pouches on coats and gloves, and uniform-like insignias on the backs of jackets. However, this season, it transforms from its shiny lacquered finish to colourful crochet in geometric patterns.
Related article: Review Of Prada Men’s Fall/Winter 2021 Collection