Leaping flames, there’s something primordial about them. In fact, it was Darwin who considered fire—and language—two important achievements of humanity. So Prada’s playing with fire isn’t as frivolous as it appears to be.
Miuccia Prada turned up the heat for autumn/winter 2018 when she showed some bowling shirts with banana and floral prints caught above flames. But as early as June, stars such as Jeff Goldblum and Pusha T were seen wearing the flame motif on what could be two-different-shirts-come-together-as-one, and fashion news sites declared the Prada shirt “the hottest in fashion right now”.
But as anyone who has dealt with fire knows, it spreads. In her women’s show two months later, Ms Prada sent out shoes with wedge heels engulfed, a burning that had, in fact, previously appeared in the spring/summer season of 2012, on stilettos that could have been tourches, or giant matchsticks. Now, the same cartoonish flames—acetate laser cut-outs—arise on the frames of Prada eyewear, part of this year’s Ornate special collection.
The flames may be akin to those seen on fast cars and faster bikes—also known as ghost flames—but, set on the outer top left and right corners of the aviator-ish frames, have the feline allure of the cat glasses of the ’50s and ’60s. That, to us, is the immeasurable beauty of Prada: no matter how far out their designs are, they have never totally abandoned old-fashioned femininity.
Prada two-tone ‘Flame’ sunglasses, SGD550, from the Ornate special collection is available at select Prada stores and Sunglass Hut. Photos: Zhao Xiangji