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At Max Mara, Pure and Clean

Perfectly tailored separates can look boring on the catwalk, but the collection was best when it stuck to metropolitan simplicity.
By
  • Angelo Flaccavento

MILAN, Italy —  Timeless classics with just a tiny bit of "fashion" is Max Mara's forte. You know, perfectly tailored separates that look smart, elegant and make women happy and beautiful. Such stuff sells ever so well in the shops but can come across as dull on a catwalk. This can be problematic but efforts to make these kinds of clothes editorial-worthy often come across a tad forced.

It happened this morning. The stress on sheer was a bit pointless, for instance. Tailored pantsuits or pencil skirts in organza, anyone? Things did not get better with the sleek looks — coat and skinny pants — that quoted Helmut Lang's mega-cuffs a bit too literally. No Max Mara woman is ever going to look good in skinny slacks with turn-ups that reach the knee, engulfing the silhouette.

All in all, such detours seemed a bit out of focus. The collection really took off, in fact, when it stuck to metropolitan simplicity. The purer, cleaner looks were really the best. After all, it's always better when the catwalk proposal matches what's on the shop floor. There are other ways to turn reality into spectacle.

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