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Jil Sander Menswear Spring Summer 2016 Milan

With this Spring/Summer 2016 menswear collection, designer Rodolfo Paglialunga finally, and clearly, made the Jil Sander brand his own. Yes, there was still the clean and minimalistic heritage of the house in evidence on the catwalk, but this time the designer brought a utilitarian urbanistic beauty to the collection that felt uniquely his own.

Much of this collection had a sensation of sartorial shelter. The functional yet protective clothing gave the models who wore them a refuge, with their stiff coated canvases, durable denims, and shielding parachute nylons. It was as if, with Paglialunga’s addition of rip cord embellishments on trousers, plastic clip straps on nylon coats, and light reflecting tape like strips of fabric at collars and pocket edges, the designer was trying to transform and elevate the banal elements of everyday existence into something refined.

Along those same lines, his clever creation of geometric, almost futuristic madras patterns out of an assortment of different fabrics placed across slim jackets, tops, and Bermuda shorts, was an astute creative display. While the touch of vintage-esque Japanese floral textiles he paired with rigid denim helped bring a touch of softness into his urban exploration.

For the harsh realities of city living, this Jil Sanders show provided men a wardrobe that was both decisively purposeful and utterly stylish.