MILAN0-Giorgio Armani took centre stage at the Milan fashion shows on Friday with the veteran designer unveiling a flirty look for Spring-Summer 2017. In his first collection since he moved to ensure his giant style empire will continue as an independent entity once he is no longer at the reins, the 82-year-old struck what he termed a “new balance between discipline and freedom.” Whether it was down to this summer’s landmark corporate restructuring is anyone’s guess. But there was definitely a sense of the master of soft precision tailoring cutting himself a little more slack than usual with a string of more overtly seductive pieces than is the Armani norm.

Charm was what it was all about, according to the designer’s notes on the collection, “in the sense of elegance and sensuality, but also of magic and femininity.” With sales last year of 2.65 billion euros ($3 billion), Armani is Italy’s second biggest fashion group by turnover, just behind Prada.

When he announced the creation of the Giorgio Armani Foundation, the designer said it would be tasked with keeping Armani “stable over time, in respect of and consistent with some principles that are particularly important to me.”

Those principles included autonomy and independence, an ethical approach to management, innovation and excellence and prudent financial management based on minimal debt and careful acquisitions.

The priority, he said at the time, was “absolute independence.” “It is the foundation on which I built my business and the last I am willing to give up.”