Shown in the Bentley Suite of the St. Regis Hotel, Max Mara pre-fall channeled classic New York heroines with a contentious streak — Dorothy Parker, Lydia Lunch and Siouxie Sioux. Working from that premise allowed creative director Ian Griffiths to pursue an edgier, cooler, younger side to Max Mara’s classic double-faced cashmere luxury and sass up the company’s offering of what to wear under its signature amazing coats. There was no shortage of the latter in the lineup, including a re-edition of the 1981 house standard 10180, a mannish cut that came in wool-and-cashmere and a specialty, hand-embroidered black version that will be sold in a limited run of under 50. Griffiths said that increasingly the customer wants exclusivity. She also wants some level of eternal youth. Thus, the focus on vampy layering pieces, such as fishnet T-shirts, pencil skirts with a swish of pleated underlay and accessories, including some badass belts, inspired by piercings. Though the outerwear remained the collection’s hook, the ready-to-wear and accessories completed the look with compelling attitude. “Everyone is getting cooler,” said Griffiths. “People who have been our customers for years in their 40s, 50s and 60s don’t want to look staid. Everyone is getting younger.”

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