Moschino is back with a must-see fashion musical for SS22
Starring Karen Elson and shot at Universal Studios, Jeremy Scott’s SS22 musical for Moschino is a tribute to daydreaming in a quintessential American Diner.
All images courtesy of Moschino
“There’s no such thing as a chic American,” once proclaimed fashion empress Diana Vreeland. Sure, Paris has its haute couture, Italy has its marble statues and leather goods, but America… America has Hollywood! Jeremy Scott knows that chic often just means boring, which is why his collections for Moschino are anything but. Instead, they’re unadulterated fun, bright and trashy in the name of joy — and increasingly, they are set in the alternate reality of beloved Hollywood films. His latest SS22 collection for Moschino (SS22 menswear and Resort 22 womenswear) is an ode to kitsch Americana, set in the plastic-fantastic dreamworld of Universal Studios in Hollywood. And just when you thought it could get any more camp, well, it’s a Moschino musical!
The last two films — or movies, it should be said — that Jeremy has made for Moschino riffed on old-school couture salon shows. First, there was Marionettes (a puppet couture show) and Jungle Red (Jeremy’s ode to The Women). This time around we meet Karen Elson as a waitress in a quintessential 50s diner, daydreaming of a life beyond pouring coffee, and clothes far beyond the confines of her sorbet-coloured uniform (which waitress hasn’t dreamt of being discovered on shift?). She puts a song into the jukebox and her world lights up with Diner Menu couture, Guys and Dolls tailoring and an entire sequence that ostensibly takes place inside a pinball machine. Karen sings covers of Chic’s Clap Your Hands, Lipps Inc’s Funkytown (and dances along with a 50-person flashmob) as well as her own track, Lightning Strikes. It hops from 50s to 40s to 70s to 80s, the clothes mish-mashing time periods and silhouettes. Does it make sense? Of course not! It’s a Hollywood film!
For anyone who has ever had a banal job waiting tables (for Jeremy, it was working in a Chinese restaurant), the feeling of daydreaming of something more glamorous will be known far too well — and something that we have all come to know following a year of staring at the ceiling at home. Yet Jeremy was making clothes that could resonate through the digital world long before social media, or indeed the lockdown fashion film was invented.
Just as Old Hollywood costume designers understood how clothes would translate through the silver screen — something that couturiers famously struggled with — Jeremy has let the medium inform his designs, creating costumes as plot devices to his cinematic films rather than just as mere clothes. “I was waiting around waiting for Instagram to be created!” he beams. “My work was already ready for it but then it became the perfect venue for it because within an image, it is very succinct and visceral and you understand it and there's not a lot of confusion or nuance. It has directness.”
Not many designers would be quick to describe their work as un-nuanced, but therein lies Jeremy’s strength. The colours are so synthetically bright and the references are worn so literally on the sleeve that there is no mistaking this for anything other than optimistic joy. Here, irony isn’t marketed as intellectualism in quote-unquote marks. In fact, ultimately, it’s incredibly sincere. Just as a cocktail dress resembling a giant hot dog, or tailoring ripped straight out of the pages of a comic book, is incredibly obvious, so too is Jeremy’s intention. “For me, I want my work to be uplifting,” he enthuses. “I want to bring people joy and bring bucket loads of smiles and optimism.” Speaking to him, you get the sense that Jeremy is a kid in a candy store, genuinely excited to be doing what he’s always dreamt of — and even just watching his film, it’s totally infectious.