While many European designers embraced escapism for resort, Alessandro dell’Acqua stuck to Milan to explore the relationship between his woman and the city.
Standing against the brutalist urban landscape with the spires of the Duomo peeking from afar, the No. 21 woman portrayed in the look book images unleashed a seductive appeal by juxtaposing transparencies and matte fabrics, restrained and relaxed silhouettes as well as playing with the masculine-feminine duplicity that is ever-present in the designer’s work.
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To build the sensual narrative, dell’Acqua relied on a key item of his lexicon, the pencil skirt, here rendered in different versions ranging from a leather style with a zipper up the back, or a knit version with a deep slit on the front. Styled with micro-bras, a red V-neck knit printed with a checkered motif mimicking a tartan fabric or an oversize blazer covered in sequins, pencil skirts were juxtaposed with mannish suits, including one in the designer’s favorite nude tone.
If these looks were coherent with the brand’s identity, the most interesting efforts saw dell’Acqua manipulating jersey in ruched second-skin pants (looking great in a tobacco shade and paired with a matching oversize bomber jacket) and a dress, as well as tulle strips intricately twisted and woven in a feminine white frock. These pieces stretched over the body, enhancing shapes but looked more pragmatic in their use, enabling the freedom of movement needed to jostle the city’s crowded streets.
Dressed-up options injected a dash of eccentricity and an extra dollop of eroticism into the concise lineup, as seen in a chiffon dress elevated with feathers and a mesh minidress punctuated with rhinestones — both leaving little to the imagination.
Launch Gallery: No. 21 Resort 2023