Creative director Ian Griffiths developed the collection around Nordic tales and traditions.
Over the weekend, Max Mara made the most of Sweden’s 18 hours of sunlight per day with an itinerary chock-full of festivities leading up to the country’s Midsummer festival, which kicks off the summer solstice in a memorable way. Set against the stunning backdrop of Stockholm’s City Hall, this fashion show marks a significant moment for Max Mara as the first-ever Resort presentation in the Swedish capital. Drawing inspiration from the vibrant Midsummer festivities, the collection, aptly named “Septem Flores,” showcases a fusion of tailored silhouettes and folk-inspired details, resulting in a truly captivating collection of modernity and tradition.
Achille Maramotti launched Max Mara in 1951 with the goal of empowering women through apparel. Griffiths embraced this tradition by seeking inspiration from a wide range of sources. His story paid tribute to the Vikings, emphasising the notion that their pillaging was gender-equitable. He also mentioned Queen Christina of Sweden, the “troublesome lesbian” Ibsen, and the pioneering suffrage fighter Selma Lagerlöf, the first woman to earn the Nobel Prize in 1909.
The Italian brand started things off with a welcome dinner on Saturday night hosted on Fjäderholmarna, one of the roughly 30,000 islands that make up the Stockholm archipelago, where the likes of Amy Adams, Demi Moore, and Lily Collins were treated to a traditional Swedish dinner on custom Svenskt Tenn floral tablecloths and made their own Midsummer flower crowns.
The collection has a slight gothic vibe, inspired by the dark themes of Scandinavian folk tales. The models wore black and ivory floral coronets, adding a touch of power to the collection. The collection also includes waistcoats, sleeveless blazers with frayed hems, and contrasting mannish cuffs with chiffon or taffeta shirt dresses. According to creative director Ian Griffiths, Max Mara is not about experimental fashion but rather normal clothes carrying important intellectual ideas. “Max Mara is not about intellectual clothes, but normal clothes carrying important intellectual ideas. I don’t expect the Max Mara woman to wear experimental fashion,” explained Griffiths.
According to Max Mara’s creative director, Ian Griffiths, he enjoyed the floral aspect of the Florence Pugh film but disregarded the darker themes. “I put aside all the sinister, gory bits, but I loved the flowers,” he said. “[That said], there is something a little bit gothic about the collection,”. However, the collection does have a slightly gothic feel, influenced by the sombre nature of Scandinavian folk tales where children undergo gruesome experiences.
The models wore black and ivory floral coronets, which added a sense of power to the collection. Griffiths also incorporated contrasting elements such as minis waistcoats, raw sleeveless blazers with frayed hems, and mannish cuffs with chiffon or taffeta shirt dresses, giving the collection a touch of punk. “They instantly become much more powerful, and less pretty,” Griffiths said. “There is something just a bit moody about the collection, and a tiny allusion to punk, which I think is always a good thing.”
Griffiths believes that Max Mara’s clothing should carry important intellectual ideas rather than being experimental. “Max Mara is not about intellectual clothes, but normal clothes carrying important intellectual ideas. I don’t expect the Max Mara woman to wear experimental fashion,” explained Griffiths.
Max Mara’s design and craftsmanship align with the Scandinavian culture of minimalism and substantiality, according to creative director Ian Griffiths. He believes that there will be a renewed interest in Scandinavia’s art, design, culture, and landscapes, as well as its magical folk and fairy tales, allowing Max Mara to explore new territory. “I believe there will be a huge reawakening of interest in Scandinavia and its contribution to art, design, culture, and majestic landscapes. And in their magical folk and fairy talks – Peer Gynt, trolls, giants, and women magicians. So, this culture allows Max Mara to explore some new territory,” stressed Griffiths.
The brand hosted 120 guests in Stockholm, offering tours of art museums, boat trips, and visits to the Vasa Museum, which houses the best-preserved 17th-century ship. The runway show was attended by a star-studded list of celebrities, including Demi Moore, Lily Collins, Amy Adams, and Kathy and Nicky Hilton, who also attended the gala show and dinner.