Boss goes all-American at Milan Fashion Week
Boss went all-american at Milan Fashion Week on Thursday. For its return to the Italian city, the main line by German fashion group Hugo Boss brought in the big guns and shook up the fashion week with a fabulous show-performance, something for which it clearly has a knack. Boss set up a bona fide baseball pitch on the outskirts of Milan, the ideal environment in which to unveil its second collaboration with long-established US sportswear brand Russell Athletic, following the success of the basketball-inspired collection dropped for the Spring/Summer 2021.
This time, Boss has chosen to dip into the world of baseball, drawing for next winter from both brands’ archives and from a 1990s aesthetic full of American retro references. Part of the collection, consisting of both menswear and womenswear, was presented in ‘see now, buy now’ mode: the Boss x Russell Athletic collection is in fact available in-store and online from Thursday September 23.
As they enter the sun-drenched arena, the show’s guests are welcomed by an MC shrieking in his microphone with a strong American accent. At one end of the arena, a giant screen is broadcasting images of the athletes disporting themselves on the pitch, hopping to a thundering disco soundtrack. A handful of mascots (in tankard and human-sized baseball outfits) prance around for the photographers, while boys and girls in red-striped blouses and white shorts, toques on their heads, walk around the bleachers selling hot dogs, hamburgers, popcorn and sodas. It is all very American Graffiti.
A roar erupts from the stands, where over-excited fans wave giant flags, hopping and skipping as the band makes its round, the musicians in dress uniform, their hats topped with huge red plumes. Suddenly, a group of cheerleaders steps on to the turf, wearing short pleated skirts and orange tops, and together with a troupe of hip-hop dancers they start performing a frenzied routine. “Twenty-one girls and seven boys,” the MC shouts with relish.
The scene is set, and the parade can begin. Encouraged by the fans’ clapping, the models are all smiles as they walk through the centre of the arena in the midst of the dancers and musicians, wearing sporty varsity-style outfits featuring sneakers and hi-top lace-up canvas shoes with white socks, complete with baseball caps, bob hats and woollen beanies.
Tracksuits, hoodies, sweaters, baseball-style t-shirts and joggers predominate, decorated with the Boss and Russell Athletic logos in vintage-style lettering. Between patches, embroidered crests and prints, each and every item sports the two brands’ logos. V-necked sweaters with striped cuffs, cardigans embellished with patches, crop tops, leggings and varsity jackets complete the Boss x Russell Athletic wardrobe, with an abundance of fleeced cotton.
The collection’s sportswear register is subtly combined with more austere, classic items in Boss’s signature basic monochrome palette (cream, beige, mineral blue), interspersed with bursts of bright orange. In this smarter section of the wardrobe, the touch of Ingo Wilts, Boss’s head of design, is evident in the elegant shorts, fluffy overshirts in bouclé wool, suits, maxi jackets, overcoats and outfits in micro-check fabric. An ensemble of minimalistic, cleverly-cut looks, with garments made in fine materials, resulting in a Boss collection that is elegant, very much refreshed and laid-back.
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