Don't Sleep on Marco De Vincenzo's Debut Collection for Etro
Far away from the heavy traffic of Milan’s center in an industrial area outside of city limits, the fashion crowd raced to witness Marco de Vincenzo’s debut collection for Etro. The venue area, which is home to trucking companies and warehouses, was invaded by private cars and taxis carrying glittering passengers who went nose to nose with semi-trucks that were carrying about their day-to-day business – likely unaware of why a frenzy of the fashionable had descended on their quarters. Away from the chaos and inside an unassuming open-air square carpeted with mod patterns, Etro held one of the best MFW shows of the Spring/Summer 2023 season.
From his singularly wonderful eponymous brand, de Vincenzo has made the leap to a bigger house after L Catterton acquired a majority share in Etro earlier this year. A shake-up was all but guaranteed. From the outset, it was clear that de Vincenzo was intent on steering the house in an entirely new direction, and the thrill that ran through the crowd as his manic-pixie-Burning-Man-rave girls stomped the runway in teetering platform shoes was palpable. As such a human expression of identity, fashion carries emotion. Fashion should be felt. De Vincenzo’s vision was a tactile jolt to the system, promising a much more youthful outlook than ever before.
Much to his credit, he kept the rich textile heritage of Etro alive, but transformed its exquisitely embroidered, fringed, and paisley-splashed fabrics into kinetically cool looks that should not be ignored. The show opened with a tiny paisley bralette worn over low-slung wide-leg trousers. Already things felt different. Bralettes continued to appear throughout the show, paired with sunset midi skirts or hot pants, and even made it into the final look. Hemlines were thigh-skimming or extra-long, and there was a cool proposition for layering oversized button-down shirts (either under asymmetrical minis or under dresses where the shirt’s hem peeked out of the bottom).
The palette was vibrant and enticing, deepened by the texture of the collection’s fabulous embroideries, crochet knits, and prints. The pieces were Cool, with a capital C. But it was the styling that really conveyed de Vincenzo’s mood. A colorful ombre of hues decorated faces and cheekbones, huge braids sprouted from the model’s crowns, and the platforms were higher than gas prices. Fashion’s take on inflation is literal.
When so much noise in the fashion system has started to blend into a cacophony, it’s a good time to be bold. Move the chess piece, take the risk. De Vincenzo refused to play it safe for his debut, and Etro was all the better for it.