Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana's love affair with Italy continued for Spring/Summer 2016, as the duo unveiled a collection that paid tribute to their homeland. Invitations arrived in the guise of menus, with 'main' options including black tube dresses, Capri pants, black veils, corsets and plenty of macramé lace, and traditional Sicilian treats – cannoli and cassata – listed as desserts, along with several helpings of love (free, according to the menu!).
The result was a line-up in a similar vein to last season's 'mamma' tribute, all wasp-waist dresses, floral prints and lace, but with a summery twist. Models emerged from a village-style market setting to a medley of Dean Martin tunes (including That's Amore) in silk crêpe shifts embellished with typically-Italian motifs: a gondola, the Roman colosseum, and the words "Italia is love".
Fifties-style full skirts came emblazoned with postcard prints from Capri, Portofino and Palermo, while crop-jacketed suits appeared spotty or striped. The dresses, of course, were show-stopping in all their lacy glory and, occasionally, were layered under embellished swing coats for the ultimate in ladylike chic. Prints featured oversized blooms or lemons and embellishment was everywhere: on straw basket handbags, flat beach sandals and even turbans.
The design duo are not ones to rest on their laurels so this season they evolved things even more by bringing together the traditional and contemporary worlds: models paraded down the runway armed with iPhones, stopping along the way to take selfies with the audience in the background, which immediately appeared on oversized screens suspended above the runway. Fun, relevant and pretty, the Dolce & Gabbana boys certainly know how to play the fashion game.
"We went on an Italian vacation and did some shopping in 'Italia is Love' style. Domenico and Stefano sent out dozens of OTT sundresses and shopping outfits to inspire us for our next Capri vacation; macramé, embroidery, embellishment, and fun, colourful prints filled the runway Dolce style," said Helen David, Harrods Chief Merchant, of the show.