The 50th anniversary of the summer of 1969, Woodstock and all that, may have come and gone in pop culture, but not in Milan, where it’s still sparking inspiration — at Fendi, Alberta Ferretti and more. Another time traveler? Veronica Etro. She took a spin through the well-worn boho genre, using as her touchstones “posh pirates” (Anne Bonny and Mary Read) and “aristo groupies” (Anita Pallenberg and Marianne Faithfull).
“I was bewitched by this book, ‘[Good Night] Stories for Rebel Girls,’ which is very popular in Italy. It’s fairy tales, not with princesses but with strong female heroines in history,” Etro said of her introduction to female swashbucklers, whose studded boots and printed headscarves were all over the wood plank runway, accessorizing safari shorts suits, ikat pajama pants, paisley wrap jackets and frilly lace collar blouses.
Name-checking rich hippie havens Tangier, Ibiza and Goa, Etro worked the contrast between Seventies men’s wear-inspired tailoring and the softness of floating handkerchief dresses and printed caftans, cinched in with shrunken patchwork vests. Mick and Bianca Jagger’s white suit came out to play, as did that free-love totem, the butterfly, landing on allover prints and the toes of flat sandals.
It was all just so expected.
One novel development was a focus on artisanal knits, including a textured, patchwork animal and paisley patterned fringe cardigan coat that was art to wear over a tailored caramel-colored pants suit.
What was also a pleasant surprise was the finale: Walking barefoot, the models came out wearing paisley jeans and oversize, crisp masculine striped shirts, after the first Etro shirt Gimmo Etro created at the end of the Sixties, and monogrammed “GE01.” Besides tapping into the shirt trend that’s emerging for the season, it made a statement about less-is-more simplicity that felt more timely than just another bohemian rhapsody.