Shoot by Bruce Weber for Marina Rinaldi Shoot by Bruce Weber for Marina Rinaldi

SS2016 according to Max Mara & Marina Rinaldi

Max Mara and Marina Rinaldi provide two examples of the marine theme as inspiration for their latest collections.

The sea never rests. When you’re aboard, your world is no longer fixed, but in addition to the instability comes the bonus of freedom. The sense of adventure, discovery and the unknown connected to the sea has always been an inspiration for poets and writers, and this season it is also the theme for many fashion collections.

Max MaraMax Mara

Max Mara’s spring/summer 2016 collection is brimming with marine imagery. Stripes have long had maritime associations, from the days of the horizontally-striped Breton shirt which was used by Brittany fishermen from the 1800s, and was later adopted by the French Navy. Coco Chanel introduced it into her 1917 nautical-themed collection and from then the motif has been constantly present. Today, in addition to the stripes, Max Mara evokes the sea with chunky drawstrings, rope handles on bags, double-faced peacoats with rows of polished buttons, in looks that recall the romance, toughness and discipline of life on the waves.

Max MaraMax Mara

Max Mara also commissioned illustrator Brian Grimwood to create some literal motifs on the same theme. The collection has something for everyone, with colours that go beyond navy blue and include bright reds, yellows and cerulean; dresses and skirts are tightly-tailored, while outerwear is relaxed and outsized, worn by people who have sailed oceans of experience and are absolutely entitled to express their own personality in their garments.

Max MaraMax Mara

Perhaps it is no coincidence that the spring/summer 2016 campaign for Marina Rinaldi was shot on a beach, looking out to sea. Patricia Arquette, Oscar winner for Boyhood, with her charismatic presence and her sensual curves, provides an iconic personality that mirrors the sandy-brown trench coat and tie-dyed wrap dress by Marina Rinaldi, a brand that celebrates women, their independence and their capability of using fashion garments not to clothe themselves in a style, but to use garments to create their own style.

Marina RinaldiPatricia Arquette in Marina Rinaldi

The blurred colours of the dress are set off by the generous folds of the coat, and the infinite folds in her blouse, skirt and overcoat are like the infinite variation of the waves on the sea. The shoot in Miami by Bruce Weber is storytelling at its best, evoking a family Sunday on the beach, looking towards the horizon, reminded of the ever-present contrast between here and now, and infinity.