Marni's menswear catwalk debut joined the parade of Milanese designers paying homage to what the show notes called "the classical man's wardrobe," but Consuelo Castiglioni's sense of classical was anything but conservative. For starters, she underscored her silhouette statement by kitting out her men in cashmere jersey leggings, which emphasized the boxy volume of the jackets up top. The cardigan jacket she presented as an informal alternative to conventional structure was well in keeping with the luxe-boho ethos that launched Marni to the worldsame with the astrakhan coat or the winter-white blazer in washed leather.
But, as Castiglioni has made quite clear with her women's designs, there is now much more to the Marni label than artisanal bohemia. In fact, the lean precision of this men's collection might appeal to anyone still jonesing for a Helmut Lang fix. It wasn't just that superfluous detail was removed or hidden. There was also a sense of a reduction to essence in a navy overcoat, a single-button suit, or a trim parka. The geometric blocking printed on a shirt was the linear antithesis of Marni's already-classic retro-styled shirt prints. Perhaps that's what this collection was ultimately all about: new classics.