There were layers of concepts on display at the Fendi Menswear Spring Summer 2024 show held in Capunnuccia just outside of Florence last night: the clothing, naturally, but also the location itself. The new Fendi Factory, where all the accessories featured in the collection were made, was granted LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Platinum Certification.
The moment marks the first time a eather factory in the luxury sector to receive such a certification.
Thirdly, it’s a location that has special history for the Fendi brand and family. This is where Adele Fendi, grandmother to the current Fendi Artistic Director for menswear Silvia Venturini Fendi, travelled to from Rome in order to learn the leather crafting skill that has been an underpinning motif of the brand ever since.
Taking us inside the factory – fully staffed, for full effect of course – was a visual reminder of the actual craftsmanship, the work and artistry that goes into Fendi’s leather creations and garments at large, regardless of materials. This was made even more obvious with the new accessory that came down the hallway slash runway: leather aprons and belts favoured by artisans and craftsman to contain the tools of their trade.
Paired with crisp shirting, ties, and contrasting with that familiar razor sharp Fendi tailoring, the brand defined the assemblage as the “corporate artisan”. Perhaps one of the most accurate definitions of the luxury fashion sector and its weaving of traditional crafts of leatherworking, tailoring and sewing into big money business.
The ubiquitous Fendi bag in various shapes played to this trope brilliantly. Jacquard “lunch” bags and reworked Fendi logo toolkits could have come straight off the worksite. A very tasteful worksite.
But even the most “traditional” of corporate attire was playfully tweaked. Shirting elongated into more of a painter smock while others were deconstructed into halter-necks, their sleeves trailing behind.
Utilitarian was a literal sentiment throughout the collection as well, not solely left to the details. An apron made part of a suit while the aforementioned toolbelts became a blue-collar skirt of sorts. Mixed throughout were functionally simple pieces: caramel hued tonal suits, tonal FF jacquards and mesh tops.