The family still waits for news of Vittorio Missoni, whose plane has been missing off the coast of Venezuela for ten days now, but the Missoni show went ahead today and, in the kind of ironic twist that is inevitable in such circumstances, it consolidated the company's progress in widening its frame of reference beyond the knits that are its iconic spine. Media reports have widely credited Vittorio, with sister Angela, as being the driving forces behind Missoni's evolution into a more contemporary global brand. It was clear here in an emphasis on tailoring, with Missoni's emblematic chevrons woven small on fine looms for suits and coats. The other key element in the collection was trimly fitting cardigans, a twenty-first-century solution to smart-casual situations.
At the same time, it was gratifying to see all knit's possibilities explored, with chunkier options like a knit blazer with a rougher weave, or the handful of linen knits at the end of the show with florid jumbo-size Missoni patterns on their backs. Their graphic color scheme was as bold as the show got. Otherwise, the color palette was inspired by American travels: Alaska, Pacific Northwest, Grand Canyon, the blue of ocean, the green of forest, the sandy striations of the desert. And denim, the result of a collaboration with Jean Machine. The strategic alliance with Converse also ticked up. Now it's the Jack Purcell that's been given a tone-on-tone transformation.
This year is Missoni's 60th anniversary. It will now be shadowed by Vittorio's fate. The lengthy ovation at the end of today's show suggested there were plenty of people who felt that celebrating the success of the changes he helped initiate was the best way to honor Vittorio himself.