Max Mara Spring Summer 2024 “Women’s Land Army”. Story by RUNWAY MAGAZINE. Article by Kate Granger, Note by Eleonora de Gray. Photo Courtesy: Max Mara.
It is essential to acknowledge that while the Max Mara Spring Summer 2024 collection draws inspiration from a rich historical context, it also has majority denim pieces. In today’s world, where environmental concerns are paramount, it’s crucial to consider the ecological implications of fashion choices.
Denim, a staple in many wardrobes, has long been associated with a high demand for water during production. The production of high-quality denim, often characterized by its durability and timeless appeal, does indeed require a significant amount of water.
To put this into perspective, the production of one pair of traditional denim jeans can consume up to 2,000 gallons (approximately 7,570 liters) of water. This staggering figure underscores the environmental impact of denim manufacturing, especially in regions where water resources are scarce or under stress.
Given the pressing ecological crises our planet faces, including water scarcity and pollution, it is incumbent upon both fashion designers and consumers to be mindful of the environmental footprint of clothing choices. Sustainability in fashion has become more than a trend; it’s a necessity.
As we celebrate the historical inspiration behind this collection and its homage to the Women’s Land Army, let us also reflect on the importance of responsible fashion choices in our time of ecological challenges.
Max Mara Land Army for Spring Summer 2024
In times of adversity, the strength and resilience of individuals often shine through, and history is replete with examples of remarkable women who stepped up when their nations needed them the most. One such inspiring chapter in history is the story of the Women’s Land Army, a force that emerged during World War I and was called to action once again during World War II. In this article, we delve into how this remarkable chapter in history served as the wellspring of inspiration for Ian Griffiths’ Max Mara Spring Summer 2024 collection.
The Women’s Land Army, formed during World War I and reactivated during World War II, was a force that recruited up to 80,000 women to work on farms across Britain while the nation’s men took up arms to defend their homeland. These women, often referred to as “Land Girls,” played a pivotal role in the war effort, and their contributions extended far beyond the fields. They worked in munitions factories, served as nurses, took on auxiliary military roles, acted as air raid wardens, and fulfilled many other essential non-combatant duties. In doing so, they not only supported the war effort but also helped pave the way for women to assert their place in the workforce—an emancipatory precedent that reverberates to this day.
Ian Griffiths, the creative mind behind Max Mara, found abundant inspiration in the Women’s Land Army for his Spring Summer 2024 collection. What emerged was a collection that captured the essence of this historical period, albeit in a refined and luxurious manner. Rather than embracing rusticity, the collection exuded sophistication, drawing on elements that were meticulously researched to create a utilitarian yet opulent wardrobe for today’s empowered women.
The color palette of the collection included various shades of Bill Cunningham bleu de travail, which were expertly applied to a range of garments. Long Don-style work jackets, backless narrow-cut apron-front pencil dresses, double-kneed narrow-cut work pants, and bellows-pocketed and epauletted shirt-skirts and overalls showcased the versatility of this utilitarian aesthetic. As the collection progressed, the palette shifted to rosy pinks, with patch-pocketed hot pants paired elegantly with tunics and rompers. Leather-edged canvas gardening bags and bridle-leather binocular cases added a touch of practicality, tucked under the arms of high-waisted green blousons and washed cotton wide-lapel coats—a nod to Max Mara’s heritage expertise.
One standout piece was a highish-hem fishtail parka, which signaled a transition to more autumnal shades, including the iconic camel color that is synonymous with Max Mara. Hot pants and work jackets, previously seen in other forms, reappeared as knits, while a generously-volumed satin-finished camel coat added a touch of timeless elegance. The collection also featured Jodhpur pants, a parachute-strapped corset, and a design reminiscent of a Pacific-theater US officer’s tunic, broadening the scope of the collection’s influences.
The show culminated with a series of monochrome chintz looks, encapsulating the spirit of the 1940s with a contemporary twist. It was a collection that paid homage to the Women’s Land Army, blending idealized 1940s Ipswich with the spirit of Emilia Romagna. Ian Griffiths’ deep connection to this theme was palpable, as every piece in this classy collection resonated with the heart of a gardener who understood the beauty of growth, resilience, and timeless style.
Max Mara’s Spring Summer 2024 collection stands as a tribute to the Women’s Land Army, a force that embodied the strength and determination of women during challenging times. It showcases the power of history to inspire and inform contemporary fashion, and it reminds us of the enduring legacy of women who, by their actions, helped shape a more inclusive and empowered future.