Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana chose Sicily as their inspiration, as they have countless times throughout their career. Traditionally, their home turf has been good to them, creatively speaking, but sometimes even the most flush wells run dry.
The collection was the fashion equivalent of a souvenir shop, so stocked with kitschy local clichés that one wondered if it were done in partnership with the Sicilian bureau of tourism. There were two main looks: First, colorful puppet prints, a too-literal depiction of street theater, that were garishly splashed across tunics, skirts and dresses, done in a variety of Dolce & Gabbana stock silhouettes. Second, cheerful umbrella stripes, straight from the Sicilian beach, on looks including sundresses, high-waisted shorts and the finale’s parade of retro undies. Since stripes belong to a broader fashion vocabulary, the motif provided the lineup’s most appealing moment.
During a press conference the morning of the show, Gabbana spoke as if he were expecting backlash. “We want to do it our own way; we are not looking to be trendy,” he said. “We want to make clothes and hope that people like them but we are not striving to shape new trends.” It is unlikely that the gunnysacks, snipped at the top and bottom with armholes — voila, a dress — will go wide on the zeitgeist. Likewise, the coarse raffia dress with straw floral embroidery, and the straw bustier ensembles that were essentially wearable baskets. Styled with headscarves and huge earrings in the shape of puppet heads, the whole thing was tricked way out. Sicily is an island, not an outfit.