Milan Fashion Week Was All About BSE (That’s…Big Shirt Energy)

A new year has begun and everyone is manifesting great things. Great wealth, great style, great success. And with the fall-winter 2022 men’s fashion shows mostly held in Milan, it seems that some designers are also thinking big. As in, big ass shirts.

At Zegna, there were boxy, generously cut mid-layer shirts in cream, brown, black and gray shown on high-necked knitwear and under workwear-style coats. They are part of the brand’s push to reimagine dress for a post-COVID world as a modular clothing system, a Tetris-like way of dressing both formally and casually at the same time. As such, the shirts floated around the body and hit well below the waist, a compelling bridge for the dress / dress split at the bottom.

A bit of Zegna’s advanced shirting.


Similarly, Silvia Venturini Fendi explored some “new dress” ideas with her fall collection, including longer shirt-jackets that reached mid-thigh and featured oversized collars and wide sleeves and blouses.

Big and loose shirts from Fendi.

Vittorio Virgilio

Vittorio Virgilio

But it was Kean Etro who brought it to its craziest and, to be honest, more logical conclusion: long tunic like shirts that come out of heavy sweaters or diaphanous caftans with deep V-necks and slender neck fastenings in purple and marigold and worn half tucked into matching pants.

Blouse shirts from Etro.

Vittorio Virgilio

Vittorio Virgilio

There was, of course, a time when everything was thin: skinny jeans, skinny dresses, skinny ties. But those days have passed. Blame it on the jolt of year 2000 nostalgia that has the fashion world in its deadly grip, or on the fact that everything else (jeans, shoes, bags, fit in general, really) is getting comically big (absolute units, amirite !?). And it’s no surprise that people increasingly crave comfort, the ability to move with ease and feel pampered rather than crushed. Or maybe it’s just that the fashion world is a big old pendulum and it’s about time we got tired of the little and now we want big, big, BIG, and soon we’ll get tired of it and turn into thin stuff once more. . In all likelihood, it will be a mix of all of the above.

But in the meantime we agree with the Milanese masters: dream big, think big, dress big.

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