Christian Louboutin’s red soles; Rosso Valentino, the iconic hue first defined by Mr. Valentino Garavani; Sabato De Sarno’s Gucci Rosso Ancora, a deep & rich shade of oxblood red that made its debut at the last Milan Fashion Week alongside the Florentine fashion house’s new creative director. Red is red – and has always been red.
Symbolising everything from sensuality to love, vitality to power, red is ideal for designers to make a strong statement with their fashion, as it reaches the brain faster than any other colour and commands attention.
Blumarine's FW23 show, imagined by former creative director Nicola Brognano, paid homage to Joan of Arc. Red was therefore a key colour to steer Blumarine towards sensuality, independence, intensity and danger
Trust science: red is the tint that reaches deepest into your eyes. That’s why it is also used for stoplights, signals, and when they need you to react quickly.
Trust cinema and film premieres: their red carpets will never be anything but red.
And trust Louboutin, who runs a business empire on expensive, delicate red-soled shoes; even those who would never have been caught wearing anything but black probably have a scarlet lipstick, cardinal nail polish or rust-coloured accessory in their closet.
Everyone, everywhere, is wearing red head to toe: red coats are also making a statement in both women's and men's fashion. In these images, from left to right, three FW23 looks by Alexander McQueen by Sarah Burton, Valentino by Pierpaolo Piccioli and Stella McCartney
But what is going down now? Everyone, however avant-garde, is wearing red trousers, red jumpers, red patent leather skirts, red glossy latex pieces, red sheer frills, red gloves, red head-to-toe.
FW23's most popular catwalk pieces. From left to right, a look by Matthieu Blazy for Bottega Veneta from Milan Fashion Week, an Isabel Marant outfit presented in Paris and a Dolce&Gabbana piece on the runway in Milan
Red is back in fashion, whether in tomato, vermilion, chilli-pepper or crimson shades. And what about burgundy and cherry tones? Or orangey undertones and deeper hues? Even your favourite style icon is probably embracing the trend now, and they look great doing it.
From art museums to the streets, through catwalks and beyond. Has red always been a collective obsession?
Humanity has always had a special relationship with red. The history of this hue spans the arts, such as painting and music, and fashion.
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A group of artists called ‘the wild beasts’, aka les Fauves, including Matisse, heavily adopted the colour red for its powerful impact. Singer-songwriter and musician Chris de Burgh wrote ‘Lady in red’. At a young age, couturier Valentino Garavani was impressed by an elderly lady dressed in scarlet at the Barcelona Opera House; she caught his attention, standing out from a white, blue and black crowd.
The look-at-me red is the FW23 hottest colour trend
Kiss quiet luxury goodbye and welcome back the best traffic-stopping, attention-grabbing hue.
Red exudes passion; it may change in tone, but its essence remains the same, always ultra-chic, even as it constantly evolves. It awakens the five senses like a flame but is also a staple in the wardrobes of self-centred souls. Throughout history, red has always been associated with luxury and a catalyst of beauty.
A popular colour in romantic contexts, red is synonymous with love, desire and passion, but also sexiness and power. This is exemplified by these FW23 outfits imagined by Alberta Ferretti (left), Nensi Dojaka (centre) and Alexander McQueen by Sarah Burton (right)
The autumn-winter 23/24 fashion collections have made it clear: the colour red is going to take on a major role in the contemporary scene. Red will be used to its fullest expressive power and sexiness. This fiery hue is no longer just an accent in a dress or lipstick, as it will play a more central, sensual and mysterious role in women’s and men’s fashion.
In the middle, a FW23 look by Matthieu Blazy for Bottega Veneta. On the two sides, FW23 looks by emerging designer Marco Rambaldi
While we have just seen red popping up on a few spring-summer 2024 catwalks and agree that it will be there for a while, it has now made its way off the runways and into the fashion world as people have started to wear FW23 outfits. We can spot trendsetters wearing outfits by emerging talent at grocery stores, such as the hottest pieces by Marco Rambaldi, a designer who showcased his fiery red signature on the Milan catwalks last February. His collection included total red looks with crocheted hearts, cut-outs and plays of proportions. In the same fashion week, Bottega Veneta’s Matthieu Blazy went artsy, with men wearing wool and cashmere English ribbed dresses in Vernis red and women in dresses with padded V-necks and soft cushions around the hips.
Some cult pieces from the FW23 London shows. On the left, a creation by Dilara Findikoglu; on the right, an ensemble by David Koma
In London, Turkish-British designer Dilara Findikoglu worked on an array of sensual looks featuring see-through fabrics, hairy micro-pieces leaving little to the imagination, corsets and fluid satin skirts. In the city, David Koma portrayed the key elements of twentieth-century glamour for his autumn-winter 2023 collection, with plenty of glossy red lipstick, dominatrix vibes and the seductiveness of Marlene Dietrich.
Santa Claus is comin’ to town, and so is red
The street knows best when it comes to fashion, and this is where red proves to be the trend colour for FW23. It will be your colour for this season and for the year to come, regardless of whether you are planning a night out clubbing, a date at a restaurant, or a day at the office, as even tartan is back with its red colour scheme.
Furry pieces from the FW23 catwalks. From left to right, looks by Maximilian Davis for Ferragamo, MSGM by Massimo Giorgetti, Ann Demeulemeester by Ludovic De Saint Sernin, Dolce&Gabbana
If you’re looking for fashion tips, consider adding a red furry coat to your Christmas wishlist, as suggested by Ferragamo’s Maximilian Davis, among other hype designers.