When it comes to store takeovers Harrods has the competition beat, last year they allowed Dior to move onto the fourth floor of its Knightsbridge department store, the year before that it was Chanel, and this month is Pradasphere, dedicated to the diverse passions of Miuccia Prada and her amazing Prada collections.
As well as taking over 40 of Harrods iconic windows, Pradasphere also includes a cafe and a pop-up boutique, but for me, it was all about the exhibition on the fourth floor charting the history of the 101-year-old brand that blew me away. First up, you have to remember this is a department store, not a museum, I think Harrods could teach the V&A a few things about how to put together a great fashion exhibition in a limited space, and secondly unlike most other fashion exhibitions taking place in London, the Paul Smith retrospective, the Italian Glamour, the Wedding Dresses and Jean Paul Gaultier this showcase is free, yep and they do free guided tours.
Trust me it is not to be missed, you don’t have long as it is only open until May 29, but you will be under Miuccia’s spell by the time you leave as it really does showcase what makes Prada so great, with its gorgeous 40s silhouettes, exquisitely crafted bowling bags, fun heels and playful arty prints that the Italian fashion is really known for. I really did love the way the exhibition was set out and styled, it was instantly recognisable as Prada, there was a colour of explosion encased behind huge glass cabinets that spanned the length of the room displaying ready-to-wear and accessories that fit into Prada’s key concepts from “Modernity” to “Figuration and “Animalia”.
I just really loved that all of Prada’s greatest hits were mixed together as it meant that I bounced about the exhibition from case-to-case finding my favourite pieces that I have added to a mental list of vintage pieces that if I ever saw and could afford I would just need to buy, no matter what!!!
As well as fashion, the retrospective also reflects Prada’s non-fashion loves such as art, architecture and film, I loved relaxing in the screening room and watching the specially commissioned films by the likes of Wes Anderson and Roman Polanski, it really shows that this Italian fashion house is much more than just clothing and accessories.