Swimming in the Waves of Change in Fashion

Whatever I start, I start with theory.
Big clean-up before New Year! First, I go and get a book on tidying up.
I will drive this year! The resolution made, I start with “driving for dummies” search on Amazon.

This goes for anything: I end up looking for a book before I start doing a thing. Maybe it’s not so much about theory; maybe it’s just that I‘m interested in books as material objects. I somehow feel that by holding a book in my hands I retain knowledge or skills, something concrete.

An analog lover as I am, hearing the word “change” makes me faint-hearted. Yet these days everyone and everything around is buzzing, “change, change”.

Take a far look and there are global changes like the inauguration of President Trump or Brexit; in the office, everyone surprises me by catching up the mood of doing something new; even back home my son is starting school this spring. I’m comfortable as it is, I want to stay where I am for a while – thinking so, I see the waves of change getting higher, coming closer, dragging me along. Helpless. Nearly drowning...

The world of fashion is no exception as it is facing a dramatic turning point.

With the growing presence of SNS, runway shows are forced to change their traditional form. Thus, the Fashion Week Spring/Summer 2017 held in September through October last year centering on New York and London was largely discussed for unprecedented trials and errors of the designers, such as changes in schedules and content of shows, as well as their alternative forms.

Amidst the upsurge of these waves of change, one house that stands out by adapting smartly to the mood of the times without compromising their style is Dolce & Gabbana.

I was impressed by the comment they posted in Instagram after the Milano show.

“The starting point is no longer the outfit itself. It’s the desire to tell our story, reveal an emotion, a way of life. In this way, people no longer purchase a piece of clothing but a memory, a love, a special moment, a DNA.”

An outfit with their DNA?!

True to their words, they interpreted the Spring/Summer 2017 collection through the prism of their roots: Italian Tropic.

Pasta and pizza, gelato, tomato cans, and religious imagery – they aligned the motifs that associate with Italy. Classic baroque designs garnished with flowers display the fresh use of colors characteristic of Dolce & Gabbana, together with intricate details such as 3D embroidery and appliqué. Headpieces glittering with LED lights, relaxed footwear reminiscent of hotel slippers – accessories shimmer with their playfulness.

“There are no longer rules in fashion, but what matters is to remain true to yourself.”

The message is conveyed by matching a coat heavily covered in sequins with jeans, as if combining one’s favorite items as one pleases.

This season also saw a large number of looks. Models clothed in dazzlingly beautiful apparels appeared one after another making your head swim. It was almost like a dream, time flowing by as if in a trance.

Yet another feature that filled Dolce & Gabbana collection with vibes was street dance.

Right before the start of the show a large group of young people suddenly appeared from an obscure entrance. From their looks (loose flannel shirts and baggy pants, casual to the point of being inappropriate for a show venue) you’d think they were stagehands, but they turned out to be a group of dancers specially invited from Naples.

The lights went out and the start of the show was announced, but instead of models the runway was instantly flooded by these dancers who had been waiting for their turn.

It’s not a rare thing to employ dancers at a fashion show, but this time their number was overwhelming. Their swarming figures dancing on the narrow runway transmitted the energy of chaos and confusion.

At the very end, the dancers came back onstage and joined the models, and even the audience got caught in the dance. You just had to listen to the music or see them dance, and your body started moving on its own, energized by the atmosphere.

Instead of saying you aren’t ready for the change you are facing, just swim with the current, and you may find it surprisingly comfortable – that’s what I realized through the show.