Mrs Prada celebrates her 72nd birthday on 10 May, and while the designer dresses legions of women worldwide in her unique brand of cerebral chic, this week we’re toasting Miuccia herself. Here, Vogue rewinds through 12 of her best outfits—from feather-trim trench coats to flatform sandals and neon fringing—that hallmark her iconoclastic style.
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The shocking pink shirtwaister, June 2018
Miuccia stepped out in a fuchsia-pink shirtdress for the finale of Miu Miu’s 2019 Paris Cruise show in June 2018—a blazing exclamation point on a collection dedicated equally to ankle-skimming gowns and abbreviated hot pants. Note the upper-arm bracelet worn atop the sleeve and signature sleek stilettos.
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The lime-green Met Gala look, May 2018
Miuccia wasn’t about episcopal tailoring or a gilded colour palette for 2018’s Met Gala, themed ‘Heavenly Bodies and the Catholic Imagination’. Instead, she wore neon green fringing—riffing off look 40 of Prada’s autumn/winter 2018 collection.
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The scarlet skirt suit, March 2018
A very Miuccia entrance: scarlet Prada skirt suit (with the jacket wrapped, rather than fastened), black opaque tights and the trusty strappy silver sandals she would also wear to the Met Gala two months later.
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Jacquard co-ords, May 2017
Cannes Film Festival red carpet? No big deal. Mrs P attended the premiere of director Yorgos Lanthimos’s The Killing of a Sacred Deer in a jacquard pantsuit that spotlighted the artisanal tee in place of a tailored jacket. Note the reappearance of the signature upper arm bangle, and the floral appliqué Miu Miu heels.
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The smartest casuals, January 2017
If you ever need to take a moment to refresh how to wear chunky flats, look to Prada’s final bow at the house’s autumn/winter 2017 menswear show in Milan. The feather-trim pastel knee skirt, high neck blouse and grey cashmere V-neck are the holy trinity of polished daywear.
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The marabou-trim trench, October 2016
Beyond executing the most elegant of bows, Miuccia’s marabou-trim trench coat and upscale hiking sandals are a lesson in finessing classic Prada style, which wasn’t lost on anyone stationed front row for Miu Miu’s spring/summer 2017 catwalk show in Paris.
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The leather jacket and pleated skirt, March 2014
Mrs Prada was doing statement beige way back in 2014 with the leather bowling jacket. Her deft wardrobe assemblage gives a grounding in how to pull off the new-era cult shade—a flash of primrose yellow and unfussy late ’90s-style heels go a long way.
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The prom skirt, October 2007
At the Hammer Museum’s Gala in the Garden back in 2007, Prada’s reimagined ’50s silhouette made the below-the-knee skirt the artistic focal point of an otherwise unshakably straightforward look.
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The headband, June 2004
Cast your mind back to the 2004 CFDA Fashion Awards in New York, when Mrs Prada demoed a dressed-up knit with lashings of costume jewellery—her crowning glory a regal headband, offset by an equally luminous smile.
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The chandelier drop earrings, sandals, and a cocktail, 1996
Rewind to 1996: Miuccia has just enjoyed a cocktail backstage at a Miu Miu show in New York. The look is, of course, a perfect example of the era’s uptown style, but forget the fashion for now—this is one of those candid ’90s mood moments that Pinterest exists for.
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Snakeprint and purple hosiery, October 1996
Next up in 1996, the VH1 Fashion Awards in New York (where David Bowie performed Fashion in a McQueen Union Jack dress coat), with more Miuccia magic by way of red platforms, purple hosiery, a snakeskin jacket, and another enormous smile.
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The sheer pastel shift, 1993
An early ’90s Miu Miu flashback sees Miuccia wearing a sheer pastel shift, while demonstrating her now-signature love of black opaque tights. Naturally, the designer’s runway style coordinates with supermodels’ Kate Moss and Linda Evangelista, who are seen wearing similar but not the same looks.