Fendi has always been synonymous with luxury, craftsmanship and innovation. Since its inception in 1925, the Italian fashion house has pushed the boundaries of design, redefining what it means to be fashionable.
With the Autumn/Winter 2023 collection, Fendi continues to challenge the status quo by exploring classicism and elegance through a bit of social subversion.
Kim Jones, the artistic director of Fendi's women's collection, drew inspiration from Delfina Delettrez Fendi's personal style to create a collection that plays with binaries and gendered archetypes. Delfina, who is a jewelry designer and a member of the Fendi family, has an instinctive sense of self-expression and a knack for twisting Fendi's archive pieces in unexpected ways.
The collection features masculine tailoring and traditional fabrics reimagined into feminine forms. Lace is lacquered and layered, while elements of utilitarianism appear throughout in direct juxtoposition to the delicate textures and sillhouettes. Boilersuits, aprons and uniforms are elevated into high fashion statements, while peek-a-boo lingerie moments and thigh-high, lace-up boots give a sensual and somewhat naughty touch of fetishism, asking the wearer and the viewer to explore themes of repression and expression in tandem.
There is a devil-may-care attitude lined in these clothes, and its a purposeful casual air that's meant to evoke. Knitwear appears cleanly slashed or gently warped, and felted wools are slightly shrunken. Satin dresses with a twisted drape are romantically trailed by billowing scarves, and a clean-cut mac falls open to flash its sequined lining. The pieces are meant to be mixed and matched, providing an endless array of perspectives.
Jones explains that the collection is "deconstructed, but luxurious. There's a little nod to punk, and my admiration for DIY, but moved on towards something chic." He also admires the way Delfina twists Fendi with a "chicness but a perversity," which is what he loves.
The collection incorporates graphic motifs from the Autumn/Winter 1996 Fendi archive in intarsia, alongside Karl Lagerfeld's 1981 sketches for multipurpose knitwear. The history of the House is a big part of the conversation, paying homage to Fendi's multipurpose sensibility through a new handbag called the Fendi Multi. The bag is engineered to transform between two distinct silhouettes, showcasing the duality that Fendi has made a point of projecting.
Silvia Venturini Fendi, the creative director of accessories and menswear, explains that "the idea was to create pieces that were very pure in order to match the sophistication of the collection." Other styles, like the newly conceived Fendi C'mon, draw on the same supposed simplicity.
Delfina Delettrez Fendi designed the jewelry for the collection, which echoes the same spirit of purity and sophistication. She explains that she wanted to explore the purity of the double F, locking on the ear. "Like the collection, it goes to the very essence of Fendi," she says.
All in all, Fendi's Autumn/Winter 2023 collection is a bold presentation that draws upon its references with acuity. These pieces showcase the house's commitment to craftsmanship, innovation and luxury. With Jones, Venturini Fendi, and Delfina Delettrez Fendi at the helm, Fendi continues to push the boundaries of fashion and set new standards for creativity and originality.
See more imges from Fendi's Autumn/Winter 2023 collection runway below, and learn more at fendi.com.
Photography by: Courtesy of Fendi