Acne is Chasing White Rabbits While Miu Miu is Taming Wild Horses

While the Haute Couture shows have barely started in Paris, some brands are taking advantage of a less busy schedule to unveil their commercial collections – such as Acne, with its Spring/Summer 2020 women's ready-to-wear, and Miu Miu, with its 2020 Cruise collection



Acne Studios Spring/Summer 2020 ready-to-wear show in Paris. Photo by Guillaume Roujas for NOWFASHION.


But although these two brands do not necessarily have the same clientele and are far from having a comparable artistic direction, Jonny Johansson and Miuccia Prada have, unwittingly, shared a common denominator: that of transgressing conservatism with a touch of intelligentsia so dear to their respective brands.  


Taking us on a journey of self-discovery, Johansson delivered a collection catered towards contemporary free-spirits – a more minimalist and sophisticated version of the 70s hippies. Nature, and our connection to it, was Johansson's main theme this season, and as such he focused on creating fluid, soft, and layered silhouettes in earthy pastel hues that would gently embrace the body rather than dominate it. In addition, subtle hippiesque statements were made, with tear drop-resembling face jewelry and feather accessories. Overall, the designer reaffirmed his signature style artistic direction with an almost gender-neutral approach to ready-to-wear that came with clear and refined lines and combined both wearability and a sense of creativity.



Acne Studios Spring/Summer 2020 ready-to-wear show in Paris. Photo by Guillaume Roujas for NOWFASHION.


Finally, Johanson's musical choice for his show's finale, Jefferson Airplane's "White Rabbit,” summed up the collection quite well. After all, Jefferson Airplane's iconic track – despite making a cheeky nod to Lewis Carroll's Alice In Wonderland and psychedelic drug use – was telling its generation to create their own realities, and to keep their distance from a mostly brainwashed, mainstream society – which is pretty much what Johansson did with his collection. 



Miu Miu Cruise 2020 show in Paris. Photo by Gio Staiano for NOWFASHION.


Music is what kept Miuccia Prada going as well. Earlier that weekend, on Saturday night, she closed the Cruise 2020 show season with her "Miu Miu Jockey Club" show, which had her models walking the finale to the Rolling Stone's iconic Wild Horses soundtrack. 


And wild it was: horse racing was the evening's theme. And if you weren't able to bet on the winning horse – thoroughbred stallion Le Berry won the race; for anyone wondering, yes, the brand hosted an actual horserace ahead of the runway show – you could at least bet on the clothes: Miuccia Prada did what she does best for Miu Miu, delivering a culturally and historically infused womenswear offering with a girly-girl touch. 



Miu Miu Cruise 2020 show in Paris. Photo by Gio Staiano for NOWFASHION.


Set at the Auteuil stadium, not far away from the Eiffel Tower, the 51 silhouettes mixed and matched retro-influences from the 1930s and 70s, with a little pinch of 90s flavor. Accessories were everything this season: Miuccia Prada would stack up hats on the models' heads, such as caps, bobs, berets, and other cool headwear pieces. Shoes were also an eye-catcher and included cork-soled derbies and sandals, as well as disco platforms. 

Checkered patterns, horse carriage prints, and paillette-embroidered cocktail dresses, as well as boxy jackets paired with high-waisted shorts, all made a bizarre-beautiful conservative statement, but also reminded us that while Miuccia Prada might be fond of nostalgia, she never delivers anachronistic designs. Her styles, as much as they were rooted in past references, came with quirky elements, including embroidered Chelsea collars formed into décolletés, bejeweled puffy sleeves, and plenty of iridescent and eye-popping bourgeois-chic numbers that would appeal to the millennial generation; thus reminding us of Prada's willingness to cater to women that are living in the here and now.