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Folksy Migrations at Stella Jean

Struck by Europe’s current refugee crisis, Stella Jean took inspiration from the idea of migrant Italians, which gave rise to pretty, ladylike shapes in an array of carefully mismatched patterns.
Stella Jean Spring/Summer 2016 | Source: Indigital
By
  • Angelo Flaccavento

MILAN, Italy — Making political statements with clothing is always a bit risky. Even more so when fashion is used as a commentary on dramatic events that are unfolding before the eyes of the world in real time. Yet, sometimes, the urge to express an opinion, no matter your professional background or metier, can be overpowering. Touched by the current migrant crisis, which has shocked the whole of Europe, and upset by a series of hateful comments posted on Italian social media, Stella Jean took inspiration from migrant Italians, who were much more widespread in the last century, but still exist today. Her message: we were also migrants once and we have to embrace migrants now. Well done.

If it all sounds like material for a high drama, fear not — Jean managed to keep her light and lively trademark touch. The collection was a symbolic journey, originating in Italy and touching upon the Americas and elsewhere. Translated into the Stella Jean code, this meant her usual pretty, ladylike shapes in an array of carefully mismatched patterns: cocooning little jackets, big skirts and slim trousers. The Italian quotient, all things considered, was not immediately evident, despite the country’s sartorial finesse being heralded in the show notes. The overall look was a lot less frumpy and costume-y than it has been in the past. The best pieces were a series of simple tunics with discreet, coiling frills. It would be interesting, at this point, to see Stella break her own folksy/well-to-do mode and test new grounds. She's ready.

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