It’s no secret that the fashion world looks to Mrs Prada’s catwalk shows for interior inspiration as much as what to wear (the droolsome sky blue floor covering from Prada’s AW21 show springs to mind), but how about your post-pandemic travel wish list? Yes—Vogue can exclusively reveal that Miuccia Prada’s consummate eye also has that covered.
Welcome to the dreamlike ‘Miu Miu Mountain Club’—aka Miu Miu’s AW21 show, which saw a tight-knit model crew decamp to Cortina (now officially Italy’s most fashionable Alpine ski resort) for a socially distanced runway spectacular against a vista of soaring snow-capped mountains.
First, a reality check: this was not a Zoom backdrop or CGI. Miu Miu’s 150m runway (a recycled wood path) meandered through virgin snow. And, as any cabincore aficionado will tell you, Miuccia Prada is a master of the modern mountaineering—Miutaineering?—aesthetic. Right down to the faux-fur yeti boots, crystal charm necklaces, knit snoods and panoramic scenery beamed into the living rooms of a virtual front row that included Emma Corrin (fresh from her Golden Globes best actress win), Bridgerton season two star Simone Ashley, and supermodel Du Juan.
Each had received a cryptic clue of the show’s location ahead of today’s pioneering collection unveiling in the form of a carved wooden box containing an expedition flag. “It kind of reminds me of something you would get in the Scouts,” Corrin told Vogue as she unboxed the invitation, pre-show.
Corrin’s observation struck a chord. It wasn’t just wanderlust or escapism on Mrs Prada’s mind for autumn 2021. This collection immediately switches Miu Miu’s romanticised roots on to a resolutely practical track. The adventuring spirit that underpinned the team’s mountain expedition translates in roomy snowboarding pants and robust, oversized quilted jackets that will resonate with the mindset of an emergent new world.
Many of us will have embraced the vernacular of ‘outdoor’ utility clothing for the first time during the last year, when walking boots and cycling jerseys have offered a passport into the natural world that lies beyond our living room frontiers. As we prepare to unlock a post-pandemic world, here was a moment to take a fortifying gulp of fresh (Alpine) air. Miu Miu’s small gang of mountaineering models shared a lesson in dressing for the extreme, but here also was a reminder to nurture the bonds we share with our communities—that ‘bubble’ or handful of individuals who have carried us through the past year—and to register the power of our innate survival instincts.