Milan: Designers Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana have a knack for picking out some of the most appealing trends of the season and committing themselves fully to those themes throughout the entire span of a collection – the tartan plaids of F/W 08 and last season’s homage to Nordic ski sweaters instantly come to mind. This season, the duo tapped into a few ideas that have been in the fashion psyche of late, namely floral prints, innocent country life and the 70s. All proved to be a natural fit for the label’s romantic, glamorous, very Italian aesthetic. With a collection entitled “Garden Party”, florals were the order of the day; the seeds of the idea bloomed into lush roses, climbing hydrangeas and sweet wallpaper ditsies – often worn together and from head to toe. Country maiden aprons were a key design reference, translating into flirty pinafores, smock tops and A-line skirts that coquettishly buttoned up the back. The bucolic mood continued with picnic ginghams – in printed and crochet form, classic bluebell-colored denim, and humble linens worked into bloomer shorts and culottes. D&G has always had somewhat of a boho sensibility (especially in comparison to their higher-priced line), and its signature floor-sweeping chiffon dresses and gypset peasant tops looked particularly right this season, in lieu of the current 70s mania. Although the collection did not tread any new ground,  all was handled with an earnestness and sweet sincerity that made it hard to resist.

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