With the global economy in the tank, designers are scrambling to reinvent themselves in the hopes of saving their floundering labels. One brand that seemed out of touch with the happenings of the outside world (much like Versace remains to this day) was Dolce & Gabbana. Notice how I use the past tense. The reason being that this Italian giant, known for dressing the most famous celebrities and socialites of the world, has gone back to basics, and we should all be happy.
Their slightly retrospective show delivered a series of re-styled vintage D&G pieces. The power jacket was back with a knit or tweed makeover. Silk corsets were prominently displayed, but covered up by long cardigans. Lingerie as outerwear (a D&G favorite) made several appearances, but even those looks felt restrained. Dolce & Gabbana, restrained? Now you know the financial market is really hitting fashion where it hurts.
But you want to know about the bags, of course. Well, there's an interesting thing about the bags we saw on the runway. With the exception of two or three nameless styles, the focus of Dolce & Gabbana's Fall 2010 collection was the 'Miss Sicily' Bag as well as a cross-body iPod holder. The Miss Sicily Bag, D&G's best selling handbag (and celebrity favorite), received heavy rotation on the runway. Lace, crochet and velvet all served as accents or finishes for this lady-like satchel. The wonderful thing about 'Miss Sicily' is that she's like the calm amidst a storm of confusion. Within a collection that returned to the roots of the iconic label, the 'Miss Sicily' cemented its role as the handbag staple it is and should be. While I still prefer the bold and colorful leather versions of this design, I'm genuinely attracted to all the other versions seen in Milan last week.
Don't think I'd end this review without addressing the iPod holders. I always save the best (or worst) for last. You're probably thinking I'm about to rag on these bags without compassion or mercy, right? Well, you'd be wrong. I like them. That's right. I actually like the little critters. Sure they're frivolous, over-the-top, and, frankly, unnecessary accessories, but that's part of their charm. The attached coin purses don't hurt them either. Some of the sequined versions are very "disco chic". Not that you'd carry one of these to a club. Taking a song player to a place that, well, plays songs is a bit redundant. If chain-strapped, bejeweled, cross-body iPod bags have a place in this world, it's slung across the carefully tailored torso of a chic urban dweller that power walks 15 city blocks to work and likes to bop to Lady GaGa while she travels. Someone like me doesn't have the time to listen to an iPod, let alone buy a fancy designer holder for it. I still like the holders, though, because even in today's somber economic environment we need a tad of frivolity to brighten up our day.
Photo source: style.com