For Spring Summer 2021, we were invited to the United Games of Miu Miu. The show was staged in Milan, in an elliptical sports stadium-inspired set created by AMO. The fact that there was no physical audience mirrored the state that in recent months, many sports events have had to be held with thousands of empty seats. Many of these sporting events found ways to compensate for that loss of spectator ambiance, such as filling seats with cardboard cutouts, and playing recorded cheering tracks during the games so that the athletes could feel that crucial audience feedback. “An audience is necessary for both the event and the player, in a two-way exchange,” Miu Miu’s show notes read. In the same vein, Miuccia Prada also brought back that spectator element with TV screens mounted on the walls of Miu Miu’s ‘stadium’ where the faces of the guests watching the show live over zoom were projected. Thereby, the “two-way exchange” was re-established. 

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As for the events of the Miu Miu games, we saw models as tennis players in streamlined dresses and skirt shapes, the bowling teams in frumpy-chic velvet cardigans over midi skirts, the golfers in polo shirts, and the cheerleaders in halter tops. The core of Miu Miu is always fun and irony. Lacy collars accompanied boxy jackets that looked like way-too-stylish Olympics team uniforms. Tennis dresses were accompanied by belts embellished with bows. Sheer, frou-frou tops were unexpected paired with tracksuits. Conversely, the tracksuit jackets were worn over pretty silk dresses. In a twist, football boots morphed into pointed kitten heels mules, the tell-tale laces remaining. Along with frilly silk slip dresses spliced with racer tank edging, we were served a jarring contradiction of spin class and high tea. 

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While sports uniforms are hardly described as ‘feminine’, this collection couldn’t be more so. Sweet candy colours such as bubblegum pink, mint green and lemon-drop yellow were used in speed lines of track suits or in full tone-on-tone looks. With a veritable sampler of textures from matte to gloss, the models perfectly represented the boxes of multi-coloured Marchesi sweets that were sent to editors along with the runway invitations. 

As for the faces that participated in the audience, we spotted Elle Fanning, Chloë Sevigny, Sadie Sink (of Stranger Things fame) and Yoona Lim. Each of these women represents a facet of the Miu Miu girl. She is whimsical and playful, but also rebellious in her off-beat way. As a whole, women supporting women in shared values and goals is a core value of the brand, such as witnessing and cheering the runway debut of Lila Moss — daughter of Kate Moss — who opened and closed the show. At the age of 18, Lila has already starred as the face of Marc Jacobs beauty, and fronted the Miu Miu Fall Winter 2020 collection campaign.

All images from Miu Miu
Animation by Beige Pill Productions