January 14, 2013 Milan
The collection was made of cloth, you had to admit, but tweaked and teased until you barely recognized it as such: heat-bonded, felted, degradé-d…the list goes on. It seemed more like some kind of alien element. Jackets rounded stiffly about the body or were sewn with reversed seams all the way down to their jointed elbows, so that they seemed to be exoskeletons. There were intricately quilted trenches, suits, and bombers, and a full suit made of raincoat. The bags and backpacks had the hard, faceted shape of gemstones.
As a visual spectacle of fashion, this ranked among the highest of the day, and the quality is unimpeachable, but the true success of the collection was that very little of it seemed unwearable—though it's worth wondering if every customer shares Surridge and the label's taste for tweaks. Some shearling buyers may prefer shearling to the wool-and-silk replicant version ginned up here, say. Then again, some may not. If Surridge and Z Zegna do decide to stop and smell the flowers a bit, they're headed in the right direction. They're out there in the great outdoors.