Milan Fashion Week Fall 2012
Dolce & Gabbana
Flying from New York to Paris and then Milan, all in one day, translates into many hours spent in airplanes. But seeing Dolce & Gabbana (the only show I attend in Milan), makes it all worth it. The night before the défilé, I stay at the Hotel Principe di Savoia: it’s a lively spot where the fashionistas gather, and one of the places to see (and be seen) in Milan. This visit was as much fun as ever; and Dolce & Gabbana surpassed expectations with an opulent spectacle that was rich and luxurious. It was an out-of-this-world experience.
Dolce & Gabbana’s show space, the Metropol, was beautifully decorated with rows of chandeliers down the center (draped in real roses), and a tall, baroque mirror at the runway’s end. The background music was Pavarotti singing tunes from La Traviata, which had me anticipating an Italian opera theme–but, in fact, the story behind this collection went deeper than that.
Many designers can create luxurious défilés; but as Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana explained to me later, their inspiration this time came from many, many centuries of Sicilian history, and focused on “the religious woman.” This meant details like beautiful, dark capes with heavy gold brocade; colorful floral prints; a liberal sprinkling of angels, all carefully placed (in other words, present, but not overpowering, even when worn in the hair); and yards and yards of lace. I especially loved the chic lace dresses, as well as the ankle socks, shoes and boots–all made, or trimmed, with lace.
The grand finale was incredible: all the models paraded in formation down the runway, dressed in gold-trimmed black garments of every sort: coats, dresses, jackets and pants, of course, but also corsets, bloomers and shorts. It was a real wow, not to mention a stunning display of designer virtuosity.
After the show, I love going backstage to congratulate the Dolce & Gabbana team–Domenico uncorks Champagne for la famiglia (including the entire staff, of course), and everyone fêtes another fabulous collection. The Dolce & Gabbana “family” is large: this time, I saw Monica Bellucci, Helen Mirren, Bianca Brandolini d’Adda and Marpessa (who I’d met the night before, at Plastic), and they all looked amazing in their Dolce & Gabbana ensembles! As for me, I was so taken with the experience, I forgot about my jet lag. This was a beautiful collection, and I can’t stop thinking about it!
Photographs by Arnaud Paumier