Mini skirts! Cheerleaders! And Dua's runway debut! Your Milan Fashion Week download

Models walk the runway during the finale at the Hugo Boss fashion show (Getty Images)

It was back in the midst of Milan Fashion Week February 2020 that the world began to shut down; shows were cancelled last minute and editors and influencers rushed to catch early flights home. 18 months on and the Italian fashion capital was in a decidedly celebratory (albeit very much mask-wearing) mood as it made a triumphant return to the runway, with the majority of brands once again opting to host in-person events.

Kim Jones kicked off proceedings with his sophomore ready-to-wear collection for Fendi (and the first he’s shown in the flesh), which took its cues from Studio 54 and featured an easy breezy disco-ready edit of white tailoring, satin-lapelled jackets, knit jumpsuits and feathered boleros. All that was missing from the party was a plane-full of unlucky editors, among them Lucinda Chambers, Susie Bubble, Katie Grand and Suzy Menkes, whose aircraft had been grounded at Heathrow and were forced to miss the show – arriving in Milan fashionably late after a mammoth 12-hour journey.

Few however missed the super splashy fashion show-cum-baseball game Hugo Boss hosted the following morning at the Kennedy Stadium to celebrate its partnership with sports giant Russell Athletic. In some ways the activewear struggled to make a noise alongside the brass band, cheerleaders, mascots, dance troupe and branded popcorn, hot dogs and beers, but the brilliantly bonkers American high school-esque event, opened by Gigi Hadid and closed by TikTok creator Khaby Lame (who has attracted 113 million followers in just 18 months), no doubt caused the desired social media ripple.

Gigi Hadid at Hugo Boss in Milan (Getty Images)

Another Internet-breaking moment came on Friday night, when Donatella Versace enlisted Dua Lipa for her runway debut. Opening the Versace SS22 show in a black cutout suit jacket pinned with neon safety pins (that echoed that Liz Hurley dress) and closing it in a pink chain mail maxi skirt and bustier, Lipa was joined on the runway by an all-star cast numbering Gigi Hadid, Naomi Campbell, Emily Ratajkowski and Madonna’s daughter Lourdes Leon – all clad in the house’s signature Medusa-print silks and Miami neons.

(Dolce & Gabbana SS22 women’s show in Milan)

The party continued at Dolce & Gabbana where a highly sexed and sequinned collection stomped and shimmied a mirrored runway to a soundtrack of club classics– think killer stilettos, low-rise lace-up trousers and an endless array of sequinned and zebra-print mini skirts; some belt-like in their brevity.

In fact, after several sightings in London, Milan has officially cemented the mini skirt’s return for summer ’22. At Prada they came in duchesse satin with floor-skimming trains, at Emporio Armani’s 40th anniversary show they came cocktail-ready bedecked in semi-translucent red, blue and green sequins, and even MaxMara, a brand typically in favour of more subdued silhouettes, slipped into something a little leggier, with mini skirts and dresses comprising every other look.

Molto sexy Milan is back and it’s feeling zestier and more celeb-packed than ever.

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