It was a newsy season.
The Spring/Summer 2024 shows have now come and gone, and in their wake, they’ve left more than the usual amount of headlines. Ascendant major designers made their debuts: Sabato De Sarno at Gucci, Simone Bellotti at Bally. Established major designers made their exits: Sarah Burton from Alexander McQueen, Gabriela Hearst from Chloé. A rising chorus of voices have not only questioned the need for the “circus” around fashion shows (the throngs of celebrities and gawkers, in tandem, outside the doors), but also, the integrity of the designs on the runways. Have we lost sight of “real” fashion?
I think any negative sentiment regarding the latter question may not be quite so justified. Fashion has always reflected the times we live in, and the times we live in right now are hyper-online—and hyper-obsessed with stardom.
We also consume endless amounts of content of the same thing, in essence. How many times have you watched a TikTok, only to then see another one a few scrolls later from a different POV?
If fashion seems all over the place, or conceived less out of sketchbook originality and more out of screetime convenience, I’m alright with it. Because there is still a ton of variety and intellect out there, and, from Spring/Summer 2024, there were some truly good and memorable moments.
If we take away the headlines and focus solely on the Fashion, I am going to divide this recap into two parts: Soft, sometimes dream-like tropicana (this is Miami, after all, and we’ve never met a Spring/Summer collection that doesn’t have something befitting of our sunny shores) and sly prep meets subverted academia. Let’s go.
Sunny, slinky goodness from Versace and Fendi, while Emporio Armani’s vision of sultry heat came in glittering lilac. Across each city (New York, London, Milan, Paris), there were loads of these longer, slightly looser, albeit still sexy dresses.
Visions in relaxed white palettes from Chloé, where Gabriela Hearst showed her final collection as that house’s creative director, and Ferragamo, where designer Maximilian Davis has been hitting his stride. Balmain dove into clashing hothouse colors—this label, too, had some big news ahead of Paris Fashion Week: much of designer Olivier Rousteing’s collection was stolen in transit. They were able to recover.
Here we get a little funkier. At Akris, colorful geometries. At Zimmermann, a perfect lime-to-light pink ombré. At Robert Cavalli, de facto over-the-top dolce vita vibes.
Fair-weather frills from Ermanno Scervino and Missoni, while at Valentino, designer Pier Paolo Piccioli took to vaporous filigrees, forming them around the body. Think: cloud-like, but with an edge.
Super-chic, easygoing color pairings at Tod’s and Marni, complemented by a sort of moody, nighttime tropical verve: a large floral print on a black sheer dress. This look is from Sarah Burton’s final collection at Alexander McQueen. Her successor has already been named: Seán McGirr. Burton will be missed–she took over after the label’s namesake, Lee Alexander McQueen, passed away in 2010.
Here we start to get into that subverted sense of prep. At Chanel, bateau stripes (and a proudly displayed logo—why not?). At Bally, a baseball cap for athletic insouciance. At Isabel Marant, an oversized varsity-esque lurex and wool knit in the designer’s typical glam style.
I loved Miu Miu this season. It’s having a big moment. And I particularly love the school uniform twists; layers on top, a short hemline below. There were echoes of the same vibe at Jonathan Anderson’s Loewe. And, at Balenciaga, a different verve: tailoring made of upcycled pieces and totally de-formalized as such. Imagine how cool it would be if fashion critic Cathy Horyn, seen here, taught a class on journalism at your school while wearing this exact outfit?
Stella McCartney gave us dramatic shapes and proportions, while Dolce & Gabbana went austere. Here, a riding jacket with lingerie. Talk about subverted preppiness. At Saint Laurent, Anthony Vaccarello looked to Yves Saint Laurent’s famed Saharienne jacket for inspiration. This color, this silhouette, this attitude—my favorite look of the collection.
Off duty, slightly preppy, very chic energy from Bottega Veneta. Younger, just as off duty and equally as chic energy from Gucci, where Sabato De Sarno made his debut after having worked under former creative director Alessandro Michele. A funkier twist on this feeling was spotted with an oversized blazer and denim separates at Etro.
And finally, shout out to Prada. The collaboration between Miuccia Prada and designer Raf Simons, who co-create the collection, has never looked better. This is my favorite look of the entire month, of all of the collections.