Friday 3rd May

| BY Claudia Croft

Prada: Cruise 2020

There’s beauty in simplicity. Mrs Prada has always known that. Pared-down pieces in humble nylon or cotton have powered her brand from the very beginning and this Cruise collection was a celebration of those building blocks of Prada chic. Guests including Elle Fanning and Shailene Woodley settled into the curved, carpeted conversation pits which lined the catwalk in The Piano Factory, Prada’s New York office complex. There was plenty to talk about. Pleated cotton midi skirts, folksy, high-neck shirts, mannish blazers, boxy suede bombers and baseball high-tops formed the basis of the look. The proportions read as a fifties/eighties mash up – part rockabilly, part new-wave it-girl. New additions to the Prada vernacular included oversized sleeveless cricket jumpers worn over pleated umpire skirts, cotton trousers suits which combined feminine silhouettes with utility detailing and a fetching hybrid of the floral tea dress and pinstripe shirt.

Prada played with proportions. Simple cotton basketball tops were elongated into an extreme a-line. They were long enough to be worn as dresses but Prada put them over cotton midi skirts. She also introduced a quirky new way to wear to sequins – oversize and strung together to make a scarf which was then casually tossed over the shoulder schoolboy style (aka the Eaton Toss). Afterwards Prada talked about her desire for simplicity. In complicated times she reasoned, clarity is what’s required. Prada found it in honest materials, beautifully cut and rendered into easy to wear pieces. Minimum effort, maximum impact. These are clothes you can live in. These are clothes for life.