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Fendi Brought Y2K Fashion to a Luxury Level For its Spring Summer 2023 Women’s Collection

Cargo pants. Navel-baring knit cardigans. Fuzzy sweaters. Slinky slide platforms.

These pieces were staples of Y2K fashion and now on constant rotation as the era’s style revival continues dominate today’s fashion. So far, the spring ’23 collections indicate that the macro fashion trend shows no signs of slowing down.

And while there are already plenty of mid-market and high street interpretations of the Y2K revival, Fendi’s latest collection shows what the trend can look like when it’s done at a luxury level.

For its spring summer ’23 women’s line, which showed Wednesday at Milan Fashion Week, Fendi womenswear artistic director Kim Jones sent out a parade of models in cargo pants. But these pants were not the parachutes seen on every Gen-Z’er this summer. Done in a swingy luxe silk-satin in sage green or bright apple, or a perforated cream carmel leather with double F logo buckles accenting the straps of the cargo pockets, the pants offered a new-old silhouette to a luxury wardrobe.

The silhouette was made fully Y2K with a series of slide platforms, many of which came in the candy apple green hue, some fuzzy and all with a platform heel showcasing a double F logo. Knee boots with the same platform wedge heel were joined by a few flatform sneakers that kept the entire collection bouncy and captured the most optimistic and youthful moments of the original Y2K style.

MILAN, ITALY - SEPTEMBER 21: A model walks the runway during the Fendi Ready to Wear Spring/Summer 2023 fashion show as part of the Milan Fashion Week on September 21, 2022 in Milan, Italy. (Photo by Victor VIRGILE/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images)
Fuzzy platform slides at Fendi spring ’23 at Milan Fashion Week.
CREDIT: Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images
MILAN, ITALY - SEPTEMBER 21: A model walks the runway during the Fendi Ready to Wear Spring/Summer 2023 fashion show as part of the Milan Fashion Week on September 21, 2022 in Milan, Italy. (Photo by Victor VIRGILE/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images)
A model in a fur mini dress carries a pair of Fendi’s platform slides on the runway at its spring summer ’23 show.
CREDIT: Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images

The vintage look continued with the collection’s knitwear, with wispy cardigans, buttoned sparingly to reveal a navel or two. Ribbed silk knits were either sheer or skin baring in shape, paired with aforementioned cargos but also long, luxe silk skirts (some following the utilitarian spirit of the cargo with panels attached by side belts). Upon closer inspection, a series of fuzzy sweaters in sporty shapes were done in fur (the brand still produces pieces in animal fur).

Jones also continued his use of sheer fabrics, particularly organza, which was shown prominently in the fall ’22 collection.

MILAN, ITALY - SEPTEMBER 21: A model walks the runway during the Fendi Ready to Wear Spring/Summer 2023 fashion show as part of the Milan Fashion Week on September 21, 2022 in Milan, Italy. (Photo by Victor VIRGILE/Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images)
Flatform sneakers at Fendi spring summer ’23, paired with silk cargo pants.
CREDIT: Gamma-Rapho via Getty Images
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Silk cargo pants, barely-there cardigans, platforms and more populated Fendi’s Y2K-influenced spring summer ’23 collection.
CREDIT: ALDOCASTOLDI

The entire collection took influence from a look through the Fendi archives, especially in the years 1996-2002 — the heart of the Y2K era. “It’s about continuity. I am interested in looking at things that Karl has done, and seeing how we can develop them – both visually and technically,” said Jones in the collection’s show notes. “I am constantly thinking about practicality as well as luxury,” he added.

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A sheer organza dress with a Fendi logo and vintage floral design on the runway at the brand’s spring ’23 collection at Milan Fashion Week.
CREDIT: ALDOCASTOLDI

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