Italian winter fashion opts for dark
MILAN (AP) — After several weeks of snow and subfreezing temperatures in Italy, the chill is out of the air — at least weather-wise — and Italian designers are looking at the bright side of things as they begin the latest round of preview showings for fall-winter 2012-2013.
The tightly-packed fashion week calendar boasts 70 shows and as many events, including showroom presentations, store openings and "aperitivi," the Italian version of a cocktail party. All the top billed names were scheduled to introduce their winter collections, from Armani to Fendi, from Gucci, Prada and Versace.
The Italian Fashion Chamber has set up a press center in the shadow of the Duomo, or cathedral, in downtown to Milan to accommodate some expected 15,000 fashionistas in town for the shows and has mounted a show tent in front of one of Milan's favorite monuments, the Sforzesco Castle, where several of the shows will be held.
"We're hoping for a triple-A season, with no downgrading," said Mario Boselli, president of the fashion chamber said at a press conference ahead of the shows in a quip reflecting Italy's downgrading by ratings agencies as the nation struggles to avoid financial disaster.
The designing duo Dolce&Gabbana, who never miss an opportunity to celebrate, are throwing a mega party over the weekend. On Friday, Vogue America's Anna Wintour and Miuccia Prada will co-host a preview presentation of the exhibit entitled "Elsa Schiaparelli and Miuccia Prada: On Fashion" to open at the Metropolitan Museum's Costume Institute in New York in May.
On Wednesday the first day of the 7-day preview showings, both Gucci and Ferretti presented a woman who keeps her feet firmly on the ground while letting her feminine fantasy fly.
The latest Gucci woman is an enigma. In the same wisp of a body she combines rigor and romance to create a sense of demure discipline.
One thing is sure — the lady is dark, as underlined by the chiaroscuro lighting effects at the Wednesday afternoon show which opened Milan fashion week for fall-winter 2012-1213.
"This is a modern-day romanticism, a dramatic sensuality, a dark glamour, with subtle games of provocative intellect," is how creative director Frida Giannini defined her latest collection in the show notes.
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