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Uma Wang, the only Chinese designer on the Milan Fashion Week schedule, took to the Italian fashion hub to unveil her FW16 womenswear collection. The show’s soundtrack featured a voiceover announcing the date July 28, 1914 – the day Austria-Hungary declared war on Serbia, kickstarting the First World War – and Wang’s clothing itself looked to the past, with brocade fabrics and a rich color palette setting some pretty aristocratic undertones.

Those heavy, tapestry-like fabrics were used across a variety of elongated coats and billowing trousers, a motif that was echoed in the collection’s footwear.

Much like Thom Browne’s FW16 womenswear show, Wang alluded to an aristocracy desperate to keep up appearances by clothing itself in whatever finery it had at its disposal. For Browne, that meant his women did some Frankenstein-like tailoring to piece garments back together. For Wang, it seems her moneyed women were tearing up their own homes to source fabrics to keep up appearances – although the press release didn’t hint at any specific political message.

For more womenswear, take a look at the latest collections from Damir Doma, Toogood and Marta Jakubowski.

Words by Alec Leach
Freelance Writer/Editor/Consultant

Alec Leach grew up in Brighton, England, but now lives in Berlin