I’ve been a lifelong fan of Dolce & Gabbana… my folks dressed me in it as a child and it’s among the first labels I remember buying when I started shopping for myself. Their clothes all fit so well and last forever, the excess of embellishment juxtaposing clean, modern silhouettes is exactly my taste and, well, their ad’s are always on point. Furthermore, as a lover of the type of romanticized history the brand bases it’s designs on, I don’t think I’m going to be jumping ship anytime soon.
Following several seasons of in-depth explorations of traditional Italian themes, the Fall 2017 “The New Princes” collection was a slightly more toned down continuation of their recent offerings. Featuring fall’s darker colours, beautifully crafted embellishment and a level of comical kitsch that was on the verge of being too much- but wasn’t. With over 100 looks covering everything from formal, lounge and sportswear to stuffed animal backpacks and embroidered heraldic beasts, there was something for every taste. It was a playful offering, sure to bring out the child in any man.
The overwhelming media attention has focused on the show’s models- superstar millennials Cameron Dallas, Tinie Tempah, Chen Xue Dong, the Stallone sisters, Sofia Richie and others walked among a sprinkling of actual (super)models Lucky Blue Smith, Oliver Cheshire, Aurelien Muller and the like, but for me, the clothes stole the show. True- a good model is entertaining and a star like Naomi Campbell can leave a viewer awestruck, but I look at runway shows so I can see what I want to buy. So, that’s what we’ll be focusing on here.
First of all, I love the embellished metallic suits and coats. The Dolce & Gabbana Alta Sartoria fall 2015 show premiered a literal suit of gold that closed the show in every sense, but this season’s less embellished versions were no less showstopping. The gold, blue and black jacquard suit worn by Tinie Tempah, a gold and red patterned three piece and another in black velvet covered with small golden crowns were my favourites, but really, I like them all. A beautifully tailored gold and black overcoat shown over pinstriped pants and red velvet slippers was another favourite, as was a bronze, gold and black Asian-inspired paisley patterned suit. Yes, they’re not really for regular wear, but I’d definitely wear them to all sorts of parties and club nights as shown, or with other clothing.
Even the darkest non-glittery suits and outerwear were cut of uber luxurious fabrics and were so well tailored that they definitely deserve mention- Cameron Dallas’ show opening deep purple and black number, another of black embriodery, Lucky Blue’s heavy wool coat and all of the looks sent out for the show’s final walk.
Embellished sweaters were another highlight and were definitely where a lot of the show’s kitsch showed up. All manner of snarling beast, heraldic symbols, skeletons, crowned cartoon faces, a ferocious bear sweater with one furry arm and more strutted down the catwalk in Milan. To many, it’s a lot. To me- perfect! I love all the early Renaissance looking animals, Barberini gold bees and endless crowns. Even the pop art caricatures of Domenico and Stefano that were added to a button down jacket were great. True, the stuffed toy looking backpacks and hoodie were too much- and you won’t see them here, but I didn’t mind them on the runway. Though this is coming from someone with closets full of just as kitsch-y clothes, I think Dolce & Gabbana straddled the playful line perfectly.
Printed polo and silk shirts and black ruffle-fronted shirts were also outstanding and beautifully carried the Renaissance theme. The ruffled shirts were mostly shown with embellished suits and somehow didn’t at all seem out of place.
Then there were some pieces that didn’t really fit in, but I very much liked. First was a camel coat that was beautifully tailored and had a pair of embroidered knights in a square off on the chest. The length and fit on this are exceptional. Then there was a beautiful gold edged, oversized black wool tunic that has an intricate coat of arms on the front and wine red quilted lining that I will DEFINITELY be getting. It was shown over a red velvet hoodie with grey pants and looked extremely comfortable. Finally the brilliant yellow blazer and brocade, lion embroidered bomber jacket stood out among the darker shades of the rest of the collection and were definite high points. As were the pants with armor shaped fabric additions at the ankle that were shown in many colours and fabrics throughout the lineup.
Finally, you can’t talk about Dolce & Gabbana and not mention the shoes and accessories. Let’s just say I like all. Shoe wise, the label’s coveted velvet slippers were in full force and were all beautifully detailed, but the simplest boots and formal shoes were just as good. I wish they had sent a good pair of slim toe-d oxfords down the runway because I’m not a fan of boxy, rounded shoes, but even these were of obviously excellent quality. The jewelry and bags shown (minus the animal ones) were great too, and of special note was the style and number of slim bowties that appeared.
Style wise, multiple signet rings and layers of chains turned the models into modern princes and are very easy additions that bring that catwalk style into your personal wardrobe. I’ve been rocking exactly that look for years, but I think I’m going to add a few more. Dolce & Gabbana is all about that lux, so head to toe, the models exuded wealth and a certain polished joie de vivre.
It was great.
Image credits: cover photo- Dolce & Gabbana’s official Instagram page, all others via Vogue.com