Vanity Fair: “Bottega Veneta, very good the first (by Matthieu Blazy). The best of the fourth day of Milan Fashion Week. The debut on the catwalk of the brand’s new creative director. Julianne Moore also applauds him” …

MF Fashion: “Bottega Veneta, analysts welcome the new creative director” …

Vogue: “Matthieu Blazy, an expectation well rewarded by an autumn / winter 2022-23 collection that gives life to a new idea of minimalism” …

Matthieu Blazy makes his debut in Bottega Veneta, a brand that had undergone questionable upheavals in recent months, when it was still led by Daniel Lee, who on the one hand gave the company remarkable results even in times of covid, and on the other the controversial abandonment from social networks poorly digested by many.

Blazy, the 35-year-old Belgian did an internship at Balenciaga and worked at Raf Simons, Maison Margiela Artisanal, Celine and Calvin Klein before joining Bottega Veneta as director of prêt-à-porter design in 2020. He’s a nice pedigree, but he’s always been a guy behind the scenes. Then last November, after Daniel Lee abruptly left the scene, he was appointed creative director.

Lee left the mark when he was on an upward jag, which doesn’t make transitions any easier or more obvious. But there are no two ways to do it, this was a terrific debut: a clear break with the recent past, self-confident, far-reaching and significantly more interesting than these images suggest.

The white tank top and jeans in the number one look and the button down and jeans in the look that followed? All made of leather. Bottega Veneta started out as a handbag company and braided leather is the house specialty, but the sublime nubuck of that tank top and jeans was a surprise and a showcase for the thoughtfulness of the new house designer.

Behind the scenes in the throng of affluent celebrities – Julianne Moore, Jacob Elordi, Neneh Cherry and former Blazy boss Raf Simons, among them – he discussed his approach: “The idea was to bring back energy, a silhouette that really expressed movement, because Bottega is a bag company, so you go somewhere, you don’t stay at home. This collection is basically a journey “, he continued.” There are many characters, everyone has places to go, they feel quite free . “

He studies these images and you’ll see what he means: the cropped flares were cut longer front than back, suggesting forward motion or speed, and the sloping back of the pea coat had a similar effect. Women will definitely go places with these tailored dresses. Their simplicity and honesty, not to mention their luxury, make them value propositions: identifiable with no expiration date.

Where the dress was done with precision, Blazy’s knitwear was more eclectic; shrunken patchwork sweaters had the charm of handmade. The recent success of the label is due to the It-ness of its bags and shoes. A lot will be riding on Blazy’s new interpretations. Even with accessories the emphasis was on craftsmanship. The new Kalimero bag has been woven in one piece without seams, and the same goes for the thigh-high boots.

It was tempting to see Easter eggs here and there: nods to the work Blazy has contributed to in the past, whether it was the asymmetrical dropped-waist dresses that evoked Celine or the Leavers lace slip dress in a yellow that recalled the famous unlined fur by Calvin. In this way, the collection was also about his journey. There will be many women and men happy to hitchhike and follow where it goes next.

Alessandro Sicuro  for ________  Sure-com America
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