Bottega Veneta's FW19 Show Is a Display of Leather Obsession

Daniel Lee presents his inaugural collection for the Italian brand.

Fashion
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At Milan Fashion WeekDaniel Lee has made his official debut at Bottega Veneta by delivering a Fall/Winter 2019 collection that pays tribute to the Italian brand’s famous, artisanal leather craftsmanship.

Having previously worked at CélineMaison MargielaBalenciaga and Donna Karan, the 32-year-old Creative Director is tasked with reinventing the storied brand by generating appeal to a younger audience. For his inaugural collection, the Central Saint Martins graduate decides to start things off by experimenting extensively with leather, the material that has been the foundation of the luxury fashion house since its inception in 1966.

 

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Staged in a clear tent, the runway show saw a strong opening look coming in the shape of a sleeveless dress, quilted heels and a matching Intrecciato-inspired handbag, all crafted with sleek, black leather.

The Maxi Cabat was just unveiled earlier this February, and at today’s show, the modern, wide stripes had returned to cover a lineup of accessories and footwear. Throughout the catwalk, the use of the material was unmissable — from coats and skirts, to utilitarian boots and bags in various forms. Besides quilting, Lee also attempts to explore other ways to work with leather, like laser-cutting it into tiny squares, as seen on some of the office-ready silhouettes.

 

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The co-ed show also introduced us to Lee’s take on menswear, an area that didn’t exist in Phoebe Philo’s Céline. One look in particular saw the model draped in a blazer that sat right on top of a leather jacket designed with motocross references. The Bottega man also wears sheer turtlenecks with oversized suiting, sweaters with cheeky cutouts and luxe rain parkas.

It’s probably too soon for some to simply assume that Lee’s Bottega Veneta would be the “new Céline,” as the designer is clearly focused on reshaping the storied brand rather than redoing the past. As to whether his first collection truly resonates with the youth, we’ll find out when the products hit shelves in a few months.

Take a look at some of our favorite looks from Bottega Veneta’s FW19 show in the gallery. While you’re here, read our recap of Karl Lagerfeld’s emotional final show for Fendi.

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