Saturday 19th June

| BY Claudia Croft

Fendi: Menswear SS22

If you’ve got it, flaunt it and Fendi has one of the most distinctive buildings in Rome. The white marble arches of Palazzo della Civiltá stand sentinel over the city and its distinctive architecture provided the perfect backdrop for a Fendi men’s collection that took a bold approach to proportion and silhouette – and gave the abs a starring role.

“It is almost like a bird’s eye view of Rome from here. The colours and the perspective are always changing – the soft palette of the Roman sky across the day is so beautiful and I wanted it to be a focal point of this collection,” said Silvia Venturini Fendi, who takes constant inspiration from the light and the views. Her models used the Rationalist arches and roof deck as a catwalk for their distinctive looks, in a film directed by the artist Nico Vascellari and soundtracked by the ambient electronica of Alessandro Cortini.

The talking point was the midriff with perfectly-tailored jackets, dramatically cropped to frame toned abs, above roomy shorts – well, if midriff-baring is good enough for Bella Hadid, why not for her male equivalents? Other jackets unbuttoned over the hips, spliced with nylon organza panels or came with special pockets for pens and earpods. Meanwhile, Fendi put a row of utility pockets along the hem of her shorts, creating a surprising kind of frill. “I really wanted to give a sense of freedom to this man. I think it’s the time to break boundaries,” she said of her approach.

The bags too, broke free of convention. All the Fendi classics were there but many came in playful and surprising new forms. The Baguette was reimagined as a practical messenger bag or a dainty Perspex clutch, whilst the Peekaboo was fashioned in matte nylon and finished with Selleria macro stitching. The collection was rooted in Rome, with prints featuring a map of the eternal city or undulating cartography lines of its seven hills. The famous Fendi ‘F’ was drawn freehand – a gesture that summed up the mood of the collection. Alongside the bold silhouettes, there was looseness, freedom and a sense of movement.

Photography courtesy of Fendi.