Anyone from the Great White North knows that it’s not easy to stay on trend when battling bitter winter winds. Thankfully, our friends at Moncler just made bundling up so much better. The French outwear maven kicked off Milan Fashion Week with a bang on February 20th by giving over full artistic reign to the likes of Craig Green, Pierpaolo Piccioli, and Simone Rocha. Eight designers were tasked with creating visionary collections where authentic uniqueness is king. Not only did Moncler CEO and creative director Remo Ruffini recruit a diverse array of sartorial superstars, he also established a state-of-the-art fantasy factory where the designers could let their imaginations run riot.
Dubbed the Moncler Genius Building project, this Milan-based hub of creativity played host to the initiative’s grand unveiling, with the collections set to be released individually through single monthly projects starting in the summer. Using Moncler’s staple down jacket as a creative playground, each designer was challenged with reinventing the identity of the classic piece while keeping function a top priority. Each of the eight projects illustrates a different interpretation of the Moncler mentality, adopting singularity and variety as assets to satisfy the multifaceted desires of the Italian outerwear maker’s clientele. Below, our favourite looks from each of the eight collections.
Valentino creative director Pierpaolo Piccioli brought his ethereally elegant eye to Moncler, presenting polished parkas stripped down to their essence, accentuating shape and structure while staying true to the functionality of the garment. The silhouette of the floor-length, down-filled gowns are reminiscent of imagery pulled from the pages of The Handmaid’s Tale, while the eccentric colour-blocking gives the collection a light-hearted flair.
An homage to Moncler’s year of birth, Moncler 1952 defines the iconic brand’s style evolution over the past 66 years. The pop-art inspired collection presents the brand’s classic down jacket drenched in high-energy colours, featuring an enlarged logo and three-dimensional textures that bring each garment to life.
Après-ski luxury at its most adventurous, Moncler Grenoble by designer Sandro Mandrino showed an eclectic mix of colour and patterns. Creating playful yet functional looks covered in floral motifs, velvety textures, and show-stopping accessories, Moncler Grenoble delivered the perfect balance between sportswear and high-design.
Simone Rocha’s Moncler Genius collection was without a doubt the most romantic of the bunch. Inspiring images of Victorian mountaineers, complete with voluminous silhouettes and dainty layers of lace, Rocha’s collection seamlessly combined her signature brand of femininity with Moncler’s superior performance quality.
Presenting Moncler’s classic designs as an extension of our natural habitat, British avant-garde overlord Craig Green turned the Moncler Genius presentation on it’s head with his artfully abstract vision. Transforming the brand’s signature duvet into humanoid sculptures, Green mixes shades of black, white, and grey to showcase his dynamic pragmatism.
Noir Kei Ninomiya
Comme Des Garçons’ pattern-maker-turned-designer Kei Ninomiya brought the best of what CDG has to offer to his Moncler Genius exhibition. Using the repetition of geometric shapes as his canvas, the designer’s showing was a lesson in thinking outside the box. Converting down Moncler duvets into everything from an A-line skirt to a knitted scarf, Ninomiya put his eye for intricacy on display.
Fragment Hiroshi Fujiwara
Blending a cool mix of pop-culture and utility, Moncler’s Fragment Hiroshi Fujiwara collection showcased down jackets doused in electric colour, and accented with high-impact graphics. Opting for modern, masculine silhouettes, Japan’s godfather of streetwear, Fujiwara, integrated his aesthetic with the signature clean-cut lines of Moncler to create a rugged collection of menswear cult-classics.
Taking a contemporary streetwear approach to Moncler’s classic aesthetic, the ultimate cool California brand Palm Angels presented an assortment of graphic-heavy looks fit for the streets of LA. The only warm weather-appropriate collection featured at the Moncler Genius presentation, Palm Angels played with patent using a pallet of deep black and fire-engine red to give its collection rebellious, youthful edge.