I spy Max Mara

AP/ AFP – Max Mara pays tribute to the under-represented female spy in the latest collection, taking a cue from British feminist writer Natasha Walter who reasons “fiction needs more female spies. After all, women are trained to keep secrets”.

The secret of the Max Mara collection was discipline. The looks had a military appeal, balanced with silky flowing femininity.

The centrepiece look was Bermuda shorts, tailored shirts and matching monochrome ties, worn with matching sheer knee socks and pumps. The all-black version was nearly martial in its impact, while a series in pastels softened the impact considerably. Taking the feminine counterpoint were a series of silky skirts in sexy diagonal tiers worn with billed caps and knee-high boots, all in trademark monochromes of pastel.

Mixing it up with some prints, the collection also paired masculine Prince of Wales jackets with feminine paisley dresses, and a silky polka-dot series had a tromp-l’oeil catch-me-if-you-can effect. The looks were styled with tight twin braids and dark lipstick — contrasting innocence with a femme fatale touch.

Top runway models Candice Swanepoel, Gigi Hadid and Doutzen Kroes opened the show as a Charlie’s Angels trio in Sherlock Holmes gray, made sleek with tight silhouettes accented by zipped pockets and cinched waists. Joan Smalls and Kaia Gerber joined Hadid and her sister Bella Hadid in the closing look of silky sheaths with tiered detailing and military caps. The four linked arms as they walked backstage.