Emporio Armani RTW Fall 2021

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One of Giorgio Armani’s original claims to fame — knocking the stiffness out of tailoring, and making jackets as comfortable as cardigans — seems particularly apropos as fashion grapples with how to engage and entice people who have been largely home-bound and wearing fleece.

His fall Emporio collection struck the right balance between being comfortable and looking sharp with its bounty of plush fabrics done up smartly. Everything on the runway looked soft, but never sloppy, and dressy in an approachable way.

Armani has adapted to the digital format impressively. While his physical shows can be meandering, he managed to edit this coed display down to a zippy eight minutes, the models spilling out into a blackened space dabbed with bright colors and neon signs.

Emporio Armani RTW Fall 2021

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While the wide pants are an acquired taste, or a reacquired taste if you lived through the 1980s, the men’s wear was handsome and interesting, yarn embroideries enlivening velvet bombers or shearling popovers. Cable-knits layered up elegantly.

The women’s offering was equally fetching and varied, hinged on plush or wooly pantsuits with gamine airs, and more demure, ladylike suits and coats detailed with velvet ribbons or lit up with strong pop colors. The designer also indulged in some full-on evening clothes done the Armani way, from short velvet cocktail dresses to a terrific striped pantsuit dusted with clear sequins.

The Emporio show coincided with news that Goldman Sachs sees as WFH as an aberration, and offered plenty of options for easing back into the office — and those infamous holiday parties.

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