20 Jun, 2024

Max Mara Cruise 2025 Review


Dreamy neutrals and reimagined classics galore

 There’s a lot to be said about the power of subtle statements, especially when it comes to dressing. It seems like a contradiction but subtle statements are in fact an art form in fashion. We love wearing clothes that make us feel empowered, comfortable, and the most stylish version of ourselves.

 This is a concept Max Mara understands more than most. The label’s founding has a lot to do with the post-war ready-to-wear movement in Italy so it’s no surprise that the brand is known for wearable, gimmick-free pieces that slot seamlessly into your wardrobe.

 For Cruise 2025, Max Mara’s Creative Director, Ian Griffiths, set his show against the backdrop of a magical Venetian landmark, the Palazzo Ducale. He was influenced by the travels of Venetian merchant and explorer Marco Polo, who’s been credited with using his experience trading fabrics to introduce the West to the opulence of the Far East.

This collection was really all about showcasing a sophisticated use of fabrics, ready-to-wear techniques (an integral part of Max Mara’s brand DNA) and the power of minimalism. Impeccable tailoring, dreamy neutrals and, of course, the stateliest coats. Read on for my take on Max Mara’s display of Venetian sophistication.

I headed over to the City of Canals to attend the show, and was lucky enough to be dressed by the brand in a gorgeous white wide-leg jumpsuit. In this post, I’m going to discuss my key takeaways from the collection, the looks I loved and the pieces I think we’ll all be wearing soon.

A Celebration Of House Signatures

When a label is all about stripping the design ethos back to core quality pieces, it makes sense that Griffiths chose to focus on one of the two designs that the house was started with – a camel coat (the other was a red suit, more on tailoring later). Coats appeared in lots of variations, especially in neutral camel and brown hues. From classic trenches and sweeping longline styles, to fuzzy teddy bear options and ones with shawl collars.

One of my favourites was a longline trench in a brown shade detailed all over with white speckles to channel aspects of Venice architecture. Think Venetian floor but make it a coat! Another was a fuzzy teddy bear style made a little more special with the addition of intricately beaded trims.

For The Love Of Neutrals

This collection was certainly a strong reminder of the joy that dressing in neutrals brings. The gorgeous camel shade is part of the brand’s DNA, so naturally it popped up quite a bit on the runway. Coats, tailoring, knitwear and more, as well as deeper shades of brown, black and luxurious cream and sandy hues.

It was all about dressing the sophisticated Venetian woman.

But what really elevated these neutrals were the textures, fabrics and embroideries. Silky accents here and there gave looks a super-premium feel, like the relaxed wide-leg trousers finished with a silky sheen and worn with a knitted jumper and longline coat, all in the same irresistible sandy shade. Another favourite detail of mine was the subtly shiny metallic gold stripes running vertically down oversized camel jumpers and cardigans.

Soft Tailoring, Reimagined

As promised, let’s get into the tailoring. Griffiths proved himself to be a master of soft tailoring. Building on popular relaxed shapes and accents, he treated us to drawstring waist ties with long fringed tassels (very on trend). They cinched in waists while providing a statement detail and came in a mix of tonal and contrasting colours.

Exaggerated lapels (I expect these to be everywhere soon), cap sleeves and exposed shirt cuffs and collars under dresses and jackets all made a case for subtly smart notes of tailoring throughout the collection.

My favourite? A single button waistcoat with folded over cap sleeves (to create a sharper silhouette) and a turned up collar, belted at the waist with a drawstring tasseled tie. It was worn with a high-collared sleeveless shirt and gorgeous wide-leg trousers featuring a subtle center pleat. Definitely a lighter take on classic tailoring, perfect for warmer weather.

Proportions At Play

Experimenting with a whole host of silhouettes, Griffiths sent models down the runway showcasing a mix of shapes – some a little bolder than others. From really-relaxed-fit, whimsically flowing maxi dresses (also spotted at Gucci), and collared coats fastened only with the top button so they billowed behind models and created a sweeping effect like capes. To statement padded shoulders and extreme puff sleeves that channelled ‘80s power dressing (these were also a favourite at the Dior show).

Also to note, draped skirts with high-low hems, exaggeratedly long cuffs and shapeless maxi dresses with deep V-necklines. Plus, an oversized coat with a rounded, boxy silhouette that reminded me a little of ‘60s-era tailored outerwear. But my favourite was a strapless maxi dress with an exaggerated flowy A-line shape – elegant and simple, yet statement, everything Max Mara stands for as a brand.

The Accessories

As always with Max Mara, practicality was key when it came to the accessories, too. One oversized top-handle tote reminded me of The Row’s Margaux, while slouchy rectangular flap styles played into the bag silhouette that proves to be still reigning supreme on the runways.

To roundup, Max Mara’s Cruise 2025 offering was seriously impressive. From embracing and building on brand signatures, to introducing a whole host of soon-to-be-coveted silhouettes. I am certainly a fan. What were your thoughts on the collection?

 Read more fashion week content

 xoxo, Tamara


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