No holds barred as Moschino goes wild

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 29 August, 1993, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 29 August, 1993, 12:00am

WHEN it comes to describing the new Moschino collection the adjectives become as florid and eclectic as the clothes.

''Ethnic-folkloric'', ''Mickey Mouse meets Hank Williams'', ''Free spirit hobo-style'', ''All over the map'' and ''Minestrone'' have been among the tags used to try to categorise the Italian designer's autumn-winter offerings in the ready-to-wear ''Cheapand Chic'' line which should be available in Hong Kong from next month.

Judging from the Sunday Morning Post 's sneak preview, there seems every indication Moschino wants to redefine the word ''ensemble''.

While it usually means a collection, the Milanese designer seems to think it means taking a little of everything, from Burberry pastiches, to Mickey Mouse motifs, to faded denim and retro skin-tight PVC trousers to come up with an item of clothing.

Moschino equates high fashion with high seriousness and seeks to avoid both, using as much sartorial wit, irony and irreverence as he can.

Judy Hunt, managing executive with the Bluebell group which acts as the Milan fashion house's agent in Southeast Asia, said: ''It is all about using colours and pricking the pomposity of the fashion world; Moschino does not follow what the others are doing since he wants to go his own way.'' In the collection, Moschino reveals again his delight in the use of prints and patches.

Perhaps the most visually arresting piece in the collection is a multi-coloured swing coat in bottle green, blue and scarlet velvet with a star and yellow flower patches on the pockets.

Savile Row appears to have travelled to Nashville by way of Disneyland, judging by the influences behind a jacket and trousers combination teamed with a waistcoat.

The trousers are moderately cut - for Moschino - and in a different size of check to the jacket.

Above the waist the outfit goes off the rails, with a gaudy heart stitched on the left breast, and underneath a red and black wool waistcoat on which Mickey Mouse's head emerges from the bottom, and below that a black shirt printed with a ''Jack and Jill'' motif.

Off the rails might be the apposite term to describe Moschino's Hobo look - named after the male and female itinerants who drifted throughout the United States by cadging lifts on freight trains.

The designer was inspired by their sense of freedom, reflected in the undulating hemline and border of a brown-hued tartan-style wool suit, teamed with a white acetate blouse.

Trousers are available in three types this season: narrow like the clinging, glistening black PVC style; the wider clown trousers in a big check; and the positively ballooning patchwork quilt strides, slit from the knee to ankle and worn with a matching waistcoat and a billowing-sleeved blouse in eau-de-Nil (a pale green).

Tiziano Gusti, the financial and administrative side of Moschino, commented on a recent visit to the territory: ''We are both conservative in our minds - but we do crazy things because we want to be different and ironic.'' He said Moschino has little in common with a number of other designers who had been pushing the ''exclusivity'' of their lines since no more than a handful of Hong Kong women were offered the chance to order them.

''That is not exclusivity; that is a false exclusivity because it is not true.

''If you want exclusivity then go for haute couture and ask for something exclusive.

''We make maybe a 1,000 pieces of everything - do you know how many other Moschino pieces you would bump into throughout the rest of the world? It is not a problem,'' he insisted.

Model: Belinda of Catwalk.

Location: Moschino Boutique, Swire House.